SCIENTIFIC NAME: Phacelia
COMMON NAME(S): Scorpion weeds
FAMILY: HYDROPHYLLACEAE - Waterleaf family
ORIGIN: North and South America, the majority in western North America, 150 spp.
HABITAT: Meadows, pastures, woodlands, floodplains, roadsides
HEIGHT: Usually less than 2'
CHARACTERISTICS: Hairy or glandular
LEAVES: Alternate, mostly deeply dissected or lobed and feather-like but sometimes entire
FLOWERS: Blue, purple or white, round or bell-shaped, the petals sometimes fringed at their margins, borne in slightly coiled clusters
FLOWERING SEASON: Spring
ALLERGENIC PRINCIPLES: Unknown
ALLERGENIC PROPERTIES: Dermatological
COMMENTS: The hairy and often glandular leaves of these small wildflowers have caused contact dermatitis to sensitive persons. Species native to the region include P. bipinnatifida Michx, P. dubia (L.) Trel. and P. purshii Buckl. (Fringed phacelia).