Etymology: Dalea: named after Samuel Dale (1659-1739), an English physician, botanist and botanical collector, and gardener who was the author of several botanical works and a treatise on medicinal plants. He was an associate of several major botanical figures in England,
Plants: erect, perennial, 1'-3' tall forb, mostly hairless
Leaves: many, very narrow, pinnately-divided into an odd number of leaflets (5) which roll backward when dry
Flowers: purple, 5-parted, 1/4" long; inflorescence up to 2" long, dense spike blooming from the bottom upward; blooms June-Aug.
Fruits: tiny pod not splitting open when mature
Habitat: full sun; dry to moderate moisture; prairies, meadows; in sandy, loamy soil
Conservation Status: Native
Floristic Rating: Coefficient of Conservatism = 7 Atlas of the Wisconsin Prairie and Savanna Flora: by T.S. Cochrane & H.H. Iltis: habitat, distribution infomation / flowering and fruiting times USDA Plants Database: Federal Distribution and detailed information including photos Dan Tenaglia's The Missouri Flora: Fabulous photographs; detailed descriptions; color and leave arrangement key. Illinois Wildflowers: Wonderful photographs; detailed descriptions; color and leaf arrangement key Southwest School of Botanical Medicine: Britton & Brown Illustrated Flora - 2nd Edition (1913) "An Illustrated Flora of the Northern United States and Canada"