This plant’s stiff stems, with narrow inconspicuous leaves, account for its common name. One bright pink flower head develops at the end of the 15–20 cm tall stem. It grows on ridges and dry areas.
Johnston reports the Blackfoot had a number of uses for the plant:
An infusion of the stems was used to treat sore eyes. A tea made from the foliage was given to nursing mothers to increase a scanty milk flow. The juice that exuded from broken stems was permitted to harden, then gathered and chewed for its flavor. A decoction was drunk for relief of heartburn. (61)
This plant is not currently in the garden, but we hope it is coming soon.
To be added soon.
Johnston, Alex. 1987. Plants and the Blackfoot. Occasional Paper No. 15., Lethbridge Historical Society, AB.