Trans. Amer. Philos. Soc., n. s. 7: 417. 1841.
Stems diffusely branched from bases, some laterals ending in spinelike tips. Leaf blades or lobes orbiculate to linear, 1–5(–20) × 1–5(–20) mm. Phyllaries whitish green. Cypselae 1–1.5 mm. 2n = 18, 36.
Phenology: Flowering Apr–Jun.
Habitat: Arid slopes and valleys, sands or clays, sometimes saline soils
Elevation: 1800–2200 m
Ariz., Calif., Colo., Idaho, Mont., Nev., N.Mex., Oreg., Utah, Wyo.
Budsage provides nutritious forage for wildlife and domestic sheep in winter; it can be poisonous or fatal to calves and lambs, if consumed in great quantity during spring months.