California Goosefoot

California Goosefoot Plant Information


California Goosefoot grows in the following 1 states:

California

It is native to California and Baja California where it can be found below 2,000 metres (6,600ft) in open areas in a number of habitat types, such as grassland, chaparral, desert, and montane. Blitum californicum (Syn. Chenopodium californicum) is a species of flowering plant in the amaranth family known by the common names California Goosefoot and (ambiguously) "Indian lettuce".

This is a perennial herb producing a number of decumbent to erect stems which approach a meter in maximum height when growing upright. It grows from a thick, fleshy caudex. When there are many stems the plant may form a clump or mat. The leaves grow on long petioles and are triangular or arrowhead-shaped and up to about 10 centimeters long. The edges are deeply and sharply toothed.
The inflorescences are spherical clusters dotted along an inflorescence-like spike. Each dense cluster contains several rounded flowers, with each flower a series of flat lobes covering the developing fruit. The fruit is a reddish utricle layered around the surface of the seed.
California goosefoot was used for a variety of purposes by Native Americans including use as a medicine and a source of soap, in addition to the use of the seeds for flour and the leaves and shoots as a cooked vegetable.

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