Desert Trumpet

Eriogonum inflatum

Photo © by Michael Plagens

Photographed at Vulture Peak, Maricopa Co., Arizona. March 2008.

FLOWERS: A tall, distinct stem often with an inflated bulb (the trumpet) minute, yellow flowers of Eriogonum just below a much branched inflorescence. Bright yellow flowers are six parted and arranged at the tips of slender stalks of intricately branched inflorescence. At each junction the stalks usu. divide into three smaller stalks eventually becoming thread-thin. Plants with or without the trumpet structure have been given varietal status.

LEAVES: Oval-oblong to kidney-shaped leaves are shiny and have a rippled texture. Virtually all of the leaves are in a basal rosette - this keeps the leaves close to the ground and out of the drying winds.

ANNUAL: In the Sonoran Desert this plant is a long lived annual sometimes persisting from season to season. Robust plants of early spring likely survived from the previous fall.

FRUIT: Small, single seeded fruits are three-sided like other buckwheats.

RANGE: Common in the Sonoran Desert in Arizona and Mexico in washes and on rocky slopes. Also ranges into Great Basin and Mojave Deserts.


Polygonaceae -- Buckwheat Family

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More Information:

Sonoran Desert Field Guide
Sonoran Desert Places
Sonoran Desert Naturalist Home Page


Copyright Michael J. Plagens, page created 24 July 2008,
updated 18 May 2009.