Texas Paintbrush (Castilleja indivisa)

Description: One of the popular paintbrushes, this showy annual or biennial grows 6-16 in. high. Its several unbranched stems form clumps topped by bright-red, paintbrush-like spikes. The flowers are actually inconspicuous and greenish, but are subtended by showy, red-tipped bracts. They sometimes produce a light yellow or pure white variation mixed in with the reds. Together, the flowers and bracts form 3-8 in. spikes.

The roots of this plant will grow until they touch the roots of other plants, frequently grasses, penetrating these host roots to obtain a portion of their nutrients. Transplanting paintbrush may kill it. Indian paintbrush has a reputation for being unpredictable. In some years, when bluebonnets (which flower at approximately the same time as Indian paintbrush) are especially colorful, paintbrush will have only an average flowering year. Other years, paintbrush is spectacular.

Family: Scrophulariaceae

Synonym(s): Texas Indian Paintbrush, Entireleaf Indian Paintbrush, Texas Paintbrush, Indian Paintbrush, Scarlet Paintbrush

USDA Symbol: CAIN13

Duration: Annual

Habit: Herb

Size Class: 0-1 ft.

Bloom Color: Red, Orange

Bloom Time: Mar, Apr, May

Water Use: Medium

Light Requirements: Sun

Soil Moisture: Dry

Bloom Notes: The roots of this plant will grow until they touch the roots of other plants, frequently grasses, penetrating these host roots to obtain a portion of their nutrients. Transplanting paintbrush may kill it.

Missing Images: Plant, Leaf, Flower

Data Completeness: Complete

ATTRIBUTION: All of the Texas Wildflower images in this post are copyrighted and are the exclusive property of Terry B. Kahler. Reproduction without explisit written consent is prohibited. Some of the information contained in this section was taken from the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center website and is being used under their terms of use. Redistribution from this site is prohibited. Additional information contained in this section was taken from the USDA website including the USDA code.

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