Rubber Rabbitbrush

Scientific Name:

Chrysothamnus nauseosus

Type:

Shrub

Habitat:

Dry soils in open brushlands and woodlands

Range:

Western North America

Status:

No listed status

This species is

NATIVE

to the Truckee Meadows.

Identification:

Rubber rabbitbrush is a round shrub that usually stands between 2 to 5 feet tall. These shrubs have bright yellow, tubular flowers arranged in bundles at the ends of their branches in groups of five. Aside from the flowers, rubber rabbitbrush is mostly a gray-green color with alternating leaves that have little hairs on them. They are late-flowering plants, flowering from August to October.

Fast Facts:

  • The Latin translation of rubber rabbitbrush's name comes directly from the plant's characteristics. Chrysos = gold and thamnos = shrub. Nauseosus = nauseating, as rubber rabbitbrush has a strong scent.

  • Rubber rabbitbrush is an important source of food for foraging animals across its native range. It is also an important plant for pollinators as it flowers later in the summer, therefore giving pollinators a pollen source when many other flowers have already died back.

  • During World War Two, this plant was studied as a substitute for commercial rubber. Even though rubber rabbitbrush produces high quality rubber, it was not economical to produce on a large scale since each individual plant only produces a very small amount of rubber.

  • In the Paiute language, rubber rabbitbrush is called Segoop.

Sources:

Contributor(s):

Haley McGuire (research & content)

Alex Shahbazi (edits & page design)

Last Updated:

April 22, 2021, 10:21:48 PM