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Halogeton Halogeton glomeratus


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credit: Sheri Hagwood

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Alternate name: Saltlover

Family: Chenopodiaceae, Goosefoot view all from this family

Description About five much-branched stems, red and prostrate in youth, becoming whitish and upright, radiate from the base of an erect central stem.
Habit: succulent native annual herb; stems red in youth becoming yellow to white; taprooted; may form large colonies.
Height: 4-24 in (10-60 cm).
Leaf: bluish-green, tubular, linear, fleshy, spine tipped, 0.2-0.75 in (4-18 mm) long.
Flower: inconspicuous, in leaf axils.
Fruit: dry seed, either winged black or wingless brown.

Warning Can be toxic to animals (especially sheep) if eaten. Humans should generally avoid ingesting plants that are toxic to animals.

Flower June to September.

Habitat Disturbed, barren, alkaline soils; desert shrubland, sagebrush steppe, overgrazed prairie, dry deserts, burnt areas, abandoned farms, dry lakebeds, roadsides, disturbed areas; 4000-7000 ft (1200-2100).

Range Native to Asia; introduced perhaps as late as 1930; now naturalized throughout the western U.S., from Washington south to California, east to New Mexico, northeast to Nebraska and South Dakota, northwest to Montana.

Discussion Also known as saltlover, barilla. This plant is considered weedy or invasive in most areas; it is listed as a noxious weed by Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, New Mexico, Oregon, and the U.S. government. Halogeton is a pest on rangelands in the western United States. It is toxic to livestock and able to tolerate highly saline soils.