Sonoran Desert Naturalist >>> Field Guide >>> Sonoran Desert Flora >>> Euphorbiaceae >>> Argythamnia serrata

Saw-toothed Ditaxis
Yuma Silverbush

Argythamnia serrata
(Ditaxis serrata)

Pen & Ink Illustration © by Michael Plagens

Drawn from live specimen observed in the Gila Mountains, Yuma County, Arizona. 28 Feb 1994. At lower right: inflorescence with two female flowers and an array of much smaller male flowers on a spike above the females.

RANGE: Restricted to the very hot, almost frost-free sections of the Lower Colorado Sonoran Desert. Fairly common in the mountain ranges of Yuma County.

LEAVES: Leaves are stiff and are sharply serrate. Prominent parallel veins.

PERENNIAL: A low, tough, few-leaved, mostly herbaceous sub-shrub.

ARMED. The leaves are stiff and the margins lightly spine-tipped.

FLOWERS: Small and without showy petals. Much larger female flowers arranged on a spike below the males. See illustration. Blooms in response to rainfall.

FRUIT: Dry three-sided capsule.

Euphorbiaceae -- Spurge Family

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Copyright Michael J. Plagens, 1999-2008