name = "Castilleja"

image_caption = Northwestern Indian paintbrush "Castilleja angustifolia"
image_width = 240px
regnum = Plantae
divisio = Magnoliophyta
classis = Magnoliopsida
subclassis = Asteridae
unranked_ordo = Euasterids I
ordo = Lamiales
familia = Orobanchaceae
genus = "Castilleja"
genus_authority = Mutis ex L.f.
subdivision_ranks = Species
subdivision = About 200, see text

Castilleja, commonly known as Indian paintbrush or Prairie-fire, is a genus of about 200 species of annual and perennial herbaceous plants native to the west of the Americas from Alaska south to the Andes, as well as northeast Asia. These plants are classified in the family Orobanchaceae, They are semi-parasitic on the roots of grasses and forbs.

"Castilleja" species are used as food plants by the larvae of some Lepidoptera species including "Schinia cupes" (which has been recorded on "C. exserta") and "Schinia pulchripennis" (which feeds exclusively on "C. exserta"), and checkerspot butterflies such as "Euphydryas" species.

One of the species of this genus, "Castilleja linariifolia", was adopted on January 31, 1917 as the state flower of Wyoming. [Wyoming Statute 8-3-104 [ (Title 8)] ]

Uses and toxicity

The flowers of Indian paintbrush are edible and sweet, and were consumed in moderation by various American Indian tribes as a condiment with other fresh greens. These plants have a tendency to absorb and concentrate Selenium in their tissues from the soils in which they grow, and can be potentially very toxic if the roots or green parts of the plant are consumed.

The Chippewa Indians used a hairwash made from Indian Paintbrush to make their hair glossy and full bodied and as a treatment for rheumatism. The high selenium content of this plant has been cited as the reason for its effectiveness for these purposes. Nevada Indian Tribes used the plant to treat venereal diseases and to enhance the immune system. Various other tribes used the plant as its name suggests -- as a "paintbrush" .

The high Selenium content of this plant makes it potentially toxic if consumed in large quantities. This plant should be avoided as food if found growing in highly alkaline soils, which will increase the selenium levels in the plants. Indian Paintbrush has similar health benefits to consuming garlic if "only" the flowers are eaten in small amounts and in moderation. [Edible and Medicinal Plants of the West, Gregory L. Tilford, ISBN 0-87842-359-1]

elected species


External links

* [ Native Plant Information Network] : Listing of species in the Castilleja genus.
[,7206 Jepson Manual] - taxonomic description of the genus.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Castilleja — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda ? Castilleja Castilleja angustifolia …   Wikipedia Español

  • Castilleja — spec. Systematik Kerneudikotyledonen Asteriden …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Castilleja — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Castilleja (homonymie). Castilleja …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Castilleja — ID 15909 Symbol Key CASTI2 Common Name Indian paintbrush Family Scrophulariaceae Category Dicot Division Magnoliophyta US Nativity N/A US/NA Plant Yes State Distribution AK, AL, AR, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DE, FL, GA, HI, IA, ID, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA,… …   USDA Plant Characteristics

  • Castilleja — noun genus of western North and South American perennials often partially parasitic on roots of grasses • Syn: ↑genus Castilleja, ↑Castilleia, ↑genus Castilleia • Hypernyms: ↑asterid dicot genus • Member Holonyms: ↑Scrophulariaceae …   Useful english dictionary

  • castilleja — cas·til·le·ja …   English syllables

  • Castilleja de la Cuesta — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Castilleja de la Cuesta Bandera …   Wikipedia Español

  • Castilleja angustifolia — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda ? Castilleja angustifolia Castilleja angustifolia en el sur de Nevada (EE.UU.) …   Wikipedia Español

  • Castilleja linariifolia — Castilleja linariifolia, in the Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming. Scientific classification Kingdom …   Wikipedia

  • Castilleja miniata — Castilleja miniata …   Wikipédia en Français

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