Sonoran Desert Naturalist >>> Field Guide >>> Sonoran Desert Flora >>> Brassicaceae >>> Lesquerella purpurea

Purple Bladderpod
Rose Bladderpod

Lesquerella purpurea

Photo © by Michael Plagens

Photographed in a ravine near Tortilla Flat, Maricopa Co., Arizona. March 2009.

PERENNIAL HERB: Tall, often spindly, spring perennial mostly in shady ravines. Most plants are less than ½ meter tall. Above ground portion is herbaceous and dies as summer heat begins.

FRUIT: A spherical pod on a slim peduncle. The pod has two chambers and there are usu. a few seeds in each chamber.

FLOWERS: Four relatively large, lily-white petals fade rather quickly to rose and then purple color as the flower wilts. subtended by four green sepals. Six stamens of two sizes. Flowers March and April.

RANGE: Mid and upper elevations in the eastern portions Sonoran Desert generally in canyons that are partially shaded by trees or cliffs. Also ranges into the Chuhuahuan Desert of New Mexico and Texas.

LEAVES: Elyptic leaves are alternate on stems and are crowded towards the base. Leaves and stems have stellate hairs that give a silvery appearance and a granular texture.


Brassicaceae -- Mustard Family

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Copyright Michael J. Plagens, 1999-2009