Wyoming Kitten-tails
Besseya wyomingensis (A. Nels.) Rydb.
Family: Scrophulariaceae, Figwort
Genus: Besseya
Other names: Wyoming besseya
Nomenclature: wyomingensis = of Wyoming
Nativity / Invasiveness: Montana native plant
No edibility data
No medicinal data

General: fibrous-rooted perennial herb, about 10-25 cm tall, evidently covered with soft, white hairs.

Leaves: mainly basal, the blades elliptic to ovate or oblong, about 2-5 cm long, rarely up to 7 cm, with small, sharp teeth, tapering to the stalks, the stalks shorter or almost as long as the blades. Stem leaves alternate, stalkless, much smaller, especially the lowest ones.

Flowers: numerous in a dense, terminal spike, rarely as much as 1.5 dm long. The bracts at the flower bases are elliptical, the lowest ones seldom much narrower than the others. Petals lacking, calyx with 2(3) unequal lobes, which are joined toward the base, 4-5 mm long, not surrounding the stamens and developing fruit. Stamens 2, projecting, lavender to dull purplish blue, giving the flowers their color, the filaments up to 12 mm long. April-July.

Fruits: capsules, broadly oval, silky, 5-6 mm high and about as wide, slightly notched at tip, slightly compressed. Seeds numerous.


Open slopes, from the foothills and high plains to rather high elevations in the mountains, in w., c. and s.e. parts of MT. Also in s. Alberta, and the e. half of ID to n. UT, e. to SD, NE, and n. CO.
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