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Lewis and Clark
SHOWING RECORD: 4 of 38   Bear Grass
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image: Bear Grass
Photograph by Ron Watts/Corbis
Bear Grass
(Western Turkeybeard, Indian Basket Grass)

Xerophyllum tenax



First Noted by Expedition
June 15, 1806, on the Weippe Prairie, Idaho.
 

Description
At the top of a stout stalk that grows from a massive bunch of basal leaves bloom many tiny flowers in a dense, broad, white raceme. Leaves basal, approximately 1-2.5 ft (30-75 cm) long, very narrow. Flowers have flat petal-like segments about 0.4 in (1 cm) long. Height: to 5 ft (1.5 m).
 

Habitat
Open woods and clearings.
 

Range
British Columbia to central California; east to Idaho and Montana.
 

Note
Native Americans used the leaves to weave garments and baskets and ate the roasted rootstock. Other common names for this plant are squaw grass, elk grass, turkeybeard, bear lily, and pine lily.

Species information from enature.com
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