four-wing saltbush Chenopodiaceae Atriplex
canescens (Pursh) Nutt.
|Leaf: Evergreen, alternate, linear to narrowly oblong, entire, 1/2 to 2 inches long, gray-green and scruffy, often very sparse.
Flower: Species is dioecious; males and females a drab yellow-brown, both occur in axillary and terminal panicles, appear in summer.
Fruit: A light green, ripening to light brown utricle in tight spike-like clusters, with papery bracts forming 4 wings, ripen in fall and persist for up to 2 years.
Twig: Slender, light gray-green, new twigs with fine gray hairs.
Bark: Light gray-brown, older stems can become very irregularly furrowed.
Form: A small to large multi-stemmed and heavily branched shrub. A large amount of variation exists across the population. On poor sites reaches 3 to 5 feet in height, on better sites it may reach up to 15 feet with and even greater crown spread. Large amounts of dead wood often accumulate beneath and within the crowns.
Looks like: shadscale
- gray rabbitbrush
| Additional Range Information:
Atriplex canescens is native to North America.
Range may be expanded by planting.
See states reporting four-wing saltbush.
| External Links:
USDA Plants Database
|© Copyright 2016, Virginia Tech|
Dept. of Forest Resources
and Environmental Conservation,
all rights reserved.
Photos and text by: John Seiler,
Edward Jensen, Alex Niemiera,
and John Peterson