Desert Candle

Common Names:
Desert Candle
Scientific name:
Caulanthus inflatus
Synonyms:
Streptanthus inflatus
Elevation range:
<4,800 ft.
Flowering Months:
March, April, May
Height | Length:
8 - 24 in.
Life Cycle | Lifeform:
Annual
Pollinator or food source for:
Notes:
Attracts native bees
Ancestral Usage:
food
State Occurrences:
Endemic to:
California
Desert region:
Mojave

Desert Candle 6

Desert Candle in the desert

Caulanthus inflatus is a 2.5 ft. tall annual with an inflated yellow-green stem tapering narrow at the top, which looks like a candle from a short distance. The flower has small maroon-purple petals. Barstow, CA | March 2015    

Desert Candle 7

Desert Candle in the desert

A sizable stand of mature Caulanthus inflatus on a rocky substrate.  Barstow, CA | March 20, 2015   

Desert Candle 2

Desert Candle in the desert

Caulanthus inflatus is a member of the Brassicaceae (Mustard) family. Most individuals in this photo are setting seed. Barstow, CA | March 2015    

Desert Candle 3

Desert Candle in the desert

Caulanthus inflatus mature flowers and fruit. Barstow, CA | March 20, 2015    

Desert Candle 5

Desert Candle in the desert

Caulanthus inflatus leaves are oblong, up to 3-inches long and fleshy green like cabbage. Fruit is an ascending long, thin silique poking out from the stem. Barstow, CA | March 2015