These wildflowers are easily identifiable by their bright, bushy tops that look like a paintbrush that has been dipped in red paint. However, despite this appearance the flower part of this plant is actually small, inconspicuous, and green! The red that you see is a bract, a showy leaf-like structure that grows to attract pollinators. These plants are semiparastic, meaning they can take nutrients from other plants. If a paintbrush is parasitizing another plant its leaves and stems will be more purple than green! The Spring Mountains is home to four known species of paintbrushes that can be found at various elevations.

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