Navarretia squarrosa

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Navarretia squarrosa
Used with permission from Gerry D. Carr
Navarretia squarrosa
Used with permission from Gerry D. Carr

Navarretia squarrosa, skunkbush, or skunkweed is a flowering plant in the polemoniaceae family. Synonyms: Gilia squarrosa, Navarretia eastwoodiae, Navarretia squarrosa var. agrestis



  • Kingdom - Plantae – Plants
  • Subkingdom - Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
  • Superdivision - Spermatophyta – Seed plants
  • Division - Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
  • Class - Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
  • Subclass - Asteridae
  • Order - Solanales
  • Family - Polemoniaceae – Phlox family
  • Genus - Navarretia
  • Species - N. squarrosa


N. squarrosa is a prickly, taprooted, hairy annual with a distinctly skunky smell. Plant is simple or branched, with erect stems, and up to 40 cm tall. Leaves are alternate, firm, and spiny, up to 6 cm long, and pinnately lobed. The flowers are pale to deep blue, with half united sepals that form a short tube with wax-papery intervals between the sharp wointed lobes that are 8 -14 mm long. The flower has 5 fused petals that form a 9-12 mm tube that spreads into lobes. The flowers form large, dense heads with leafy bracts. Fruits are three chambered, elliptical capsules containing 6 - 9 seeds per chamber.

Source: Pojar and Mackinnon Pg 235

Bloom Period

June - September



West of the Cascades, from southern Vancouver Island, British Columbia, to California. Source:


Open places, dry to moist meadows, usually at low elevations.

Source: Pojar 235



Photo Gallery



Abbrevition: NASQ

Seed sample from: 2011

Average Measurement: 0.9 x 0.6 x 0.5

Measurement Range: L: 0.75 – 1.1, W: 0.5 – 0.75, D: 0.4 – 0.5


Shape: Seeds tapered to almost pointed at hilum ends. Body of seeds sometimes not completely filled out – some concave dents. Hilum is pinched looking in some.

Color: Seeds reddish brown, hilum usually slightly lighter in color, but not very conspicuous.

Surface: Seeds covered in wrinkly pitted pattern. About 30 – 40 medium sized pits visible on one seed face. Seeds slightly rough looking, and somewhat lustrous.

Latitudinal Cross Section: elliptical NASQ lat.png

Longitudinal Cross Section: elliptical NASQ long.png