Lupinus sp.

Lupines can be two inches tall to six feet tall; most of the lupines in Nevada are less than two feet tall. They have clusters of purple, yellow, or white flowers. The leaflets are palmately compound, which means that the leaflets all start at one point and spread out like fingers from your palm.

[Photo] Purple Lupine. Photo by Janel Johnson.Habitat/Distribution

Lupine in Nevada grow in sagebrush and pinyon-juniper woodland on foothills and mountains. There are smaller lupines that grow from low elevation desert to high alpine areas.

Possible Viewing Sites

All Humboldt-Toiyabe ranger districts have lupines that bloom from May to August, about the same time as paintbrushes and mule’s ears. Look for lupines on open, sagebrush hillsides and near aspen stands.

Uses

Edible lupine seeds are available at some health-food stores, but wild lupines should never be eaten. They are poisonous to people and animals.

Interesting Facts

The seeds and pods look much like a cousin, the pea, but they contain toxins that can cause birth defects in humans and livestock.





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