[Columbia and Great Basin Paintbrushes]

Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush

Castilleja hispida var. acuta

Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera

Inflorescence of Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera)

The photo above shows a close-up of the inflorescence of harsh paintbrush as seen near the summit of Simcoe Butte near the northern boundary of Klickitat County in south-central Washington........June 16, 2007.


Inflorescence of Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera)Characteristics:

Harsh paintbrush is a colorful perennial wildflower found across much of the west. It consists of a cluster of hairy (hispid) stems arising 20 to 60 cm tall from a woody base. The stems are primarily unbranched and most often fairly villous or hairy. The leaves are narrowly to broadly lanceolate with the lower leaves entire and reduced in size while the upper ones larger, narrower and often with one or two pairs of lateral lobes. Occasionally the leaves are all entire margined.

The inflorescence is typically striking in coloration. It is often bright red, scarlet, or even yellow in color. The bracts are wide and deeply 3-5 lobed and more or less hairy. The calyx is 15-30 mm in length and deeply and subequally cleft above and below. The lobes are again divided 1-7 mm into two rounded to acute segments. The corolla ranges from 20-40 mm long, puberulent to pubescent, and equaling the tube in length and five or more times the length of the dark green, thickened, lower lip.

In Oregon and Washington, hairy paintbrush may be easily confused with common paintbrush. The latter may be identified by the entire leaf margins, less hairy foliage, and acutely tipped calyx lobes.


Habitat:

Harsh paintbrush may be found in grasslands and in forest meadows.


Range:

Harsh paintbrush may be found across southwestern Canada from Vancouver Island to southwestern Alberta. It is found southward through northwestern Montana and northern Idaho to northeastern Oregon and west across Oregon and Washington to the Pacific coast (as far south as Benton County, OR.).


Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera) - Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera) - Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera)

Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera) - Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera)

Harsh paintbrush blooming along Forest Road #3965 about one mile west of the Hells Canyon Overlook, Hells Canyon National Recreation Area......June 11, 2018.

Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera)

This photo shows harsh paintbrush as seen along the Hells Canyon Rim Road about one-half mile west of the Hells Canyon Scenic Viewpoint in the Hells Canyon NRA.........June 28, 2008.

Inflorescence of Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera)

The photo above shows another close-up of the inflorescence of harsh paintbrush as seen near the summit of Simcoe Butte near the northern boundary of Klickitat County in south-central Washington........June 16, 2007.


Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera) - Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera)

Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera) - Inflorescence of Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera)

Additional close-up photos of acute indian paintbrush as seen at the Lawrence Memorial Grasslands several miles southwest of Shaniko, OR..........May 15, 2010.

Close-up of the calyx of Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera). - Close-up of the calyx of Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera). - Close-up of the calyx of Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera).

Floral bracts of Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera). - Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera). - Spreading hairs on the lower stem of Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera).

Additional close-ups of acute indian paintbrush as seen along Colockum Pass Road northeast of Ellensburg, WA..........July 7, 2012.

Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera)

Acute indian paintbrush as seen atop Kamiak Butte, Kamiak Butte County Park, Whitman County, Washington..........April 29, 2013.

Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera) - Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera)

Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera) - Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera)

Harsh paintbrush blooming on the south-facing grasslands of Puffin Butte, Field Springs State Park, Asotin County, WA........June 2, 2017.


Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera) - Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera)

Harsh paintbrush in bloom along Forest Road #39 several miles south of the junction with Forest Road #3965, Hells Canyon National Monument.........June 11, 2018.

Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera) - Corolla of Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera)

Harsh paintbrush blooming near the Smoothing Iron Ranch, Asotin Wildlife Area, Asotin County, WA........June 3, 2017.

Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera)

Note the moderately long galea above. The corolla of harsh paintbrush is roughly 24-32 mm long, with the galea ranging from 10-14 mm long.

Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera)

Note the rounded calyx lobes in the photo above. Note also that the lobes are split more deeply dorsally and ventrally than laterally. The calyx ranges from 19-27 mm long.

Floral parts of Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera)

Leaves, bracts and flowers of harsh paintbrush from Castilleja Hill, in the Memaloose Hills of the central Columbia River Gorge............April 15, 2001.

Floral parts of Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera)

From left to right are one side of the calyx tube with its 2 rounded lobes, the corolla, the calyx and corolla together, and a stem leaf with 2 pairs of lateral lobes. Note the additional close-ups below.

Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera) (yellow-flowered form) - Acute Indian Paintbrush, Harsh Paintbrush: Castilleja hispida var. acuta (Synonyms: Castilleja hispida ssp. acuta, Castilleja taedifera) (yellow-flowered form)

Yellow "flowered" or bracted hairy paintbrush as seen along Forest Road #4650 east of Dog Fight Corral at the eastern side of Chief Joseph Canyon in the northern Wallowa-Whitman National Forest.........June 26, 2008.

 

This photo shows a yellow "flowered" or bracted hairy paintbrush as seen along Forest Road #4650 east of Dog Fight Corral at the eastern side of Chief Joseph Canyon in the northern Wallowa-Whitman National Forest.........June 26, 2008.

Paul Slichter