Pestle lomatium is a perennial wildflower arising from a taproot. It is a member of the carrot family (Apiaceae), and is sometimes referred to by the additional common name, barestem biscuitroot. Native to western North America, pestle lomatium can be found in dry, open habitat in low-elevation grassland, chaparral, oak woodland or sparse pine forest, as well as open, rocky montane habitat at higher elevations. Flowering occurs April-June, depending on elevation. At mature height pestle lomatium grows between 8″-2′ tall. It has several green, lance-shaped, compound leaves. What appears to be a stem is actually a peduncle that widens at the top (below the flower) in a shape reminiscent of a pestle, hence the common name pestle lomaium. The flower cluster is an umbel of yellow or yellowish-purple flowers. Pestle lomatium is a larval host plant for the anise swallowtail butterfly caterpillar and the flowers are attractive to many small pollinating insects as well. Pestle lomatium roots were, and still are, eaten by Native American tribes (hence the common name biscuitroot), and are used medicinally. Drought tolerant and deer resistant.
Seed Germination Instructions
60 days cold-moist stratification. Sow outside in fall to late winter.