Thursday, July 1, 2010

Desert Trumpet or Native American Pipeweed

Desert trumpt
or Native American pipeweed (Eriogonum inflatum)
is found in Southern California, southern Nevada, southern and eastern Utah, most of Arizona, portions of eastern Colorado and the northwest tip of New Mexico. It has an inflated stem
just below branching segments.
The inflated or swollen stem is due to high concentrations of carbon dioxide in the stem and seems to be related to gas regulation. Female wasps produce a small hole on the inflated portion and pack the cavity with larvae and lays her eggs on them, providing a food source and protected environment for her offspring. It also has very small
yellow or pink flowers
that are difficult to get pictures of because of their size.
It also has a basal rosette of leaves.
Some Native American tribes would remove the stock at the base, cut the inflated bulb in half and produce a makeshift pipe. A mixture of Indian tobacco and mistletoe would be smoked in it. Most of this information came from Wikipedia, Eriogonum inflatum.

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