Page author: David Giblin
Sarcobatus vermiculatus

Distribution: East of the Cascade in Washington; Washington south to California, east to the Dakotas, south to Colorado.

Habitat: Saline or alkaline, usually heavy soils of the drier regions.

Flowers: May-July

Origin: Native

Growth Duration: Perennial

Conservation Status: Not of concern

Pollination: Wind


Monoecious, spreading, whitish-barked shrub up to 2.5 m. tall, the branches numerous, rigid, spreading, many of them spine-tipped.


Leaves alternate, deciduous, 1.5-4 cm. long, fleshy, linear, and nearly terete.


Flowers in numerous, axillary spikes 1-3 cm. long, closely packed, naked; staminate flowers uppermost, consisting 2-3 stamens covered by a peltate scale; the pistillate lower flowers few, the perianth cup-like, completely surrounding the ovary, 1 mm. long at flowering, but greatly enlarged in fruit, the upper portion free and flaring widely to form a wing-like border; styles 2.


Fruit 4-5 mm. long, cuplike below the wing, which is nearly 1 cm. broad.

Accepted Name:
Sarcobatus vermiculatus (Hook.) Torr.
Publication: Not. Milit. Reconn. 149. 1848. 1848.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
Batis vermiculata Hook.
Fremontia vermiculata (Hook.) Torr.
Sarcobatus maximilianii Nees
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Sarcobatus vermiculatus in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Sarcobatus vermiculatus checklist entry.

OregonFlora: Sarcobatus vermiculatus information.

E-Flora BC: Sarcobatus vermiculatus atlas page.

CalPhotos: Sarcobatus vermiculatus photos.

USDA Plants: Sarcobatus vermiculatus information.

29 photographs:
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