Sagebrush small bluebells

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Photo: Leslie Bigos

Mertensia longiflora sagebrush (small) bluebells

Family ID traits:

  • Inner throat of tubular corolla marked by fornices (protruding structure )
  • Flower structure often coiled like a scorpion tail.
  • Entire plant may be hairy, prickly, or sticky overall.
  • Fruit – 4 nutlets around base of style.

Habitat: common in shrub-steppe, often under a shrub canopy. Early spring bloomer

sagebrush small bluebells

flowers: in tight
clusters, hang
downward. Petals
fused into a tube.
Color: blue fades
to pink with age.

sagebrush small bluebells

stems: fleshy, support drooping flower clusters

sagebrush small bluebells

Leaves: leathery with a bluish cast