Wire Lettuce

Common Names:
Wire Lettuce, Desert Straw
Scientific name:
Stephanomeria pauciflora
Subspecies | Variants:
Stephanomeria parryi
Stephanomeria lygodesmoides, Ptiloria pauciflora, Lygodesmia pauciflora
Elevation range:
-50 - 9200 ft
Flowering Months:
March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November
Height | Length:
1 - 2 ft.
Life Cycle | Lifeform:
Pollinator or food source for:
State Occurrences:
Desert region:
Chihuahuan, Great Basin, Mojave, Sonoran

Produces latex.

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Wire Lettuce in the desert

Stephanomeria pauciflora is an erect perennial plant with many branches bearing scale-like leaflets. Flowers occur mostly at the tips of stems. Pipes Canyon, CA | May 2016

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Wire Lettuce in the desert

Flowers of Stephanomeria pauciflora are white, lavender or pink and consist of six ray florets, minutely toothed at the tips. Stamens are dark lavender in color.  Pipes Canyon | April 2015

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Wire Lettuce in the desert

The flower head of Stephanomeria pauciflora is tall and cylindrical and has hairless phyllaries. Pipes Canyon, CA | May 2014