The photo above shows a close-up of the inflorescence of fragrant popcorn-flower as seen in the drying mud of a ditch along Kreps Lane in Conboy NWR on the southeastern base of Mt. Adams..................................May 30, 2006.
Fragrant popcorn flower is an ascending to erect annual wildflower with solitary stems to more commonly freely branched stems from the base. Plants range from 15-45 cm high and the roots are fibrous. The herbage is sparsely to moderately stribose, meaning the hairs are stiff, enlarged at their bases, and pointed at the tips. The leaves are found mainly on the stems, with the lower 3-4 pairs opposite and the upper leaves alternate. The lower leaves are linear and 4-12 cm long while the upper leaves are linear to lanceolate and range from 1-5 cm long.
The inflorescences are in non-leafy pairs, each coiled tightly at first and elongating with age. The flowers are showy, 5-10 mm wide with white corollas and a yellow eye. The flowers are fragrant. The calyx is 3-4 mm long at maturity and more densely and loosely haired than the stems.
Fragrant popcorn flower may be found in low ground and in moist fields, water courses, and in wet meadows.
Fragrant popcorn flower may be found from southern Vancouver Island south to the west of the Cascades through the Puget trough and Willamette Valley to southwestern Oregon. It extends eastward into the Columbia River Gorge to Klickitat County, WA.