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Yavapai County Native & Naturalized Plants

Frasera speciosa - elkweed

Synonyms: F. macrophylla,  F. speciosa var. angustifolia, F. stenosepala, Swertia radiata, Tesseranthium angustifolium and more see SEINET.
Other Common Names: monument-plant, deers ears, green gentian, monument plant, showy frasera
Plant Form: Forb or Subshrub

Family: Gentianaceae

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Basal leaves
Patrick Alexander @, Usage Rights: Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike (CC BY-SA)
Max Licher @, Usage Rights: Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike (CC BY-SA)
Patrick Alexander @, Usage Rights: Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike (CC BY-SA)
Forb Plant Description

Origin: Native   Life Cycle: Perennial   Similar Species: Verbascum thaspus
General Desc: Solitary, tall stem from a taproot with whorled leaves and a large spike-like arrangement of flowers.
Identification notes: Erect stout stalk, leaves and flowers dense along the stem; long, blade-like leaves from a basal rosette becoming whorled up the length of the stalk; star-shaped, light green flowers are dotted dark spots. Verbascum thaspus has yellow flowers.
Height: 1 to 6 feet


Habitat Description: Found in wet areas in meadows and conifer forests.
Plant Communities: Montane Conifer Forest, Riparian
Elevation: 5000 - 10000 feet

Flower Characteristics

Color: Light green     Shape: Regular in elongated clusters     Tubular: N     Flowering Period: May - Sep
Description: Flowers 4-lobed in clusters along the length of the stalk and on stems up to 4 inches long arising from the leaf nodes; petals elliptic to ovate and pointed, light green with dark speckles; sepals linear lance-like.

Leaf and Stem Characteristics

Leaf Color: Light green     Leaf Type: Simple     Leaf Shape: Narrow     Leaf Margin: Smooth     Leaf Attachment: Basal and opposite     Leaves Clasp: N
Hairs: Stems     Spines: N
Leaf Description: Long, blade-like leaves when mature, arise from a basal rosette and becoming whorled on the stems; basal leaves to 18 inches long and 6 inches wide, reversed lance-like shape, attached to the stem by the pointed end, other end rounded.

Fruit and Seed Characteristics

Fruit Color: Green turning to brown   
Fruit Type: Capsule
Fruit Notes: Tulip shaped, about 2 inches; open spontaneously when ripe.
Seed Notes: Rectangular and flattened with a small wing, dark brown, 1-1/2 to 2-1/3 inches long.

  Arizona Cooperative Extension
Yavapai County
840 Rodeo Dr #C
Prescott, AZ 86305
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Version 8.0  
Last Updated: Dec 13, 2022
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