Four-wing Saltbush, Atriplex canescens

Four-wing Saltbush
Atriplex canescens


Plant with Seeds



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Family: Chenopodiaceae, Goosefoot Family
Plant Size: Generally less than 6' (1.8 M) in our area.
Blooms in: Summer
Habitat Preferred: Nearly ubiquitous in this area, from riverside to Ponderosa Pine forest.
Photo(s) taken at: Peck's Lake
Bloom Color: Tiny whitish, inconspicuous flowers follwed by masses of four-winged seeds.
Other Common Names: Shadscale, Chamiso
Origin: Native
Comments: This is a very important plant in our area. The plant is salt-tolerant, is an excellent erosion-inhibitor, and provides wonderful habitat for wildlife. The seeds are edible by humans, birds and mammals. The foliage tastes salty. Males and females are separate plants (it's dioecious), which is why you see plants with masses of seeds (females) next to plants with none (males).
Further Reference & Sources: "Arizona Flora", Kearney, Peebles, et. al., Univ. of California Press, 1951 w/1960 supp.;   "A Field Guide to the Plants of Arizona", Anne Orth Epple, 1995, Falcon Press
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