Castilleja integra – Wholeleaf Indian Paintbrush

Castilleja integra - Wholeleaf Indian Paintbrush, Squawfeather

Castilleja integra - Wholeleaf Indian Paintbrush, Squawfeather

Plant Name

Scientific Name: Castilleja integra

Common Names: Wholeleaf Indian Paintbrush, Squawfeather

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial

Growth Habit: Subshrub, Herb/Forb, Hemiparasite

Arizona Native Status: Native

Habitat: Upland, Mountain. This wildflower grows in oak and pine woodlands in the mountains at elevations from 3000 to 7500 feet (900 to 2300 m).

Flower Color: Scarlet red, Orange, Yellow (rare)

Flowering Season: Spring, Summer

Height: Up to 16 inches (41 cm) tall

Description: The mostly green, exserted, beak-like floral tubes are surrounded by hairy, red, orange, or yellow, petal-like bracts that are either entire (not toothed or lobed) or shallowly cleft at the tip with erect, pointed teeth. The flowers are followed by egg-shaped seed capsules. The leaves are green and hairless or almost hairless above, paler green and densely covered with woolly, matted hairs below, alternate, simple (undivided), entire, and linear in shape with curled-up margins. The usually multiple stems are stout, often woody at the base, and covered with appressed, matted, woolly, grayish white hairs. The plants are partial root parasites of nearby plants.

The similar Rincon Mountain Indian Paintbrush (Castilleja austromontana), Wyoming Indian Paintbrush (C. linariifolia), Lesser Indian Paintbrush (C. minor), Trans-Pecos Indian Paintbrush (C. nervata), Huachuca Mountain Indian Paintbrush (C. patriotica), and Santa Catalina Indian Paintbrush (C. tenuiflora) do not have stems covered with white-woolly, appressed, matted hairs. Sierra Woolly Indian Paintbrush (C. lanata) does also have woolly stems, but its leaves are hairy both above and below and its upper leaves and floral bracts are deeply cleft.

Special Characteristics

Hummingbird Flower – The flowers attract hummingbirds.


Kingdom: Plantae – Plants
Subkingdom: Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
Superdivision: Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Division: Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
Class: Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Subclass: Asteridae
Order: Scrophulariales
Family: Scrophulariaceae – Figwort family
Genus: Castilleja Mutis ex L. f. – Indian paintbrush
Species: Castilleja integra A. Gray – wholeleaf Indian paintbrush

More About This Plant

Arizona County Distribution Map