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Common (vernacular) names applied to California vascular plants

compiled by Elizabeth Painter

up to date as of May 1, 2016

Common names (also referred to as vernacular names) are applied differently at different times and places by different users. This list is compiled from many sources and is intended to be as comprehensive as possible. It is not intended to indicate which common name is correct or preferred. Please send comments about this page to Elizabeth Painter (

TaxonCastilleja minor subsp. spiralis
Family common name(s)orobanch; broomrape; broom-rape; broom rape; broom-rapes; ground-cone; ground cone; groundcone
Genus common name(s)paintbrush; paint brush; painter's-brush; painter's brush; painters'-brush; painters' brush; painters-brush; painters brush; painted-cup; painted cup; paintedcup; Native American paintbrush
Species common name(s)minor paintbrush; minor paint-brush; minor paint brush; lesser paintbrush; little paintbrush
Common name(s) generally applied to other taxa or multiple taxaCalifornia paintbrush, annual paintbrush, annual paint-brush, annual paint brush are applied to multiple Castilleja taxa; paint-brush, prairie-fire, prairie fire, hierba del cancer, bloody noses are applied to taxa in multiple families
Common name(s), rejectednot recommended: Indian paintbrush, Indian-paintbrush, Indian paint-brush, Indian paint brush, Indianpaintbrush, large-flowered annual Indian paintbrush, large-flowered alkali Indian paintbush, large-flowered Indian paintbrush, marsh Indian paintbrush, annual Indian paint-brush, annual Indian paint-brush, lesser Indian paintbrush, California Indian paintbrush, dark-lipped annual Indian paintbrush, dark-lipped annual Indian paint-brush, red Indians; not recommended (possibly pejorative or derogatory): squaw-feather, squaw feather, squawfeather
NotesCalifornia is a proper name, so upper case preferable
Synonymy: The Jepson Manual (1993), FNA, PLANTS, etcScrophulariaceae s.l.; Castilleja stenantha A. Gray; Castilleja stenantha A. Gray subsp. spiralis (Jeps.) Munz
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