E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia

Amaranthus albus L.
tumbleweed (prostrate pigweed; white pigweed)
Amaranthaceae (Amaranth family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Jamie Fenneman  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #4851)

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Distribution of Amaranthus albus
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Species Information

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Annual herb from a taproot; stems erect or ascending, several, glabrous to short-hairy, branching basally forming a rounded plant to 1 m tall, tending to break off at the base at maturity and then behaving as a "tumbleweed".
Alternate or opposite; leaf blades rarely over 3 cm long, rounded, diamond-shaped to egg-shaped, callous-margined, bristle-tipped, narrowing to a slender stalk.
Inflorescence of small axillary clusters; bracts rigid; tepals mainly 3; stamens 1-3.
Capsules opening along an "equator", the top coming off like a lid, 1-seeded; seeds 0.6-1.0 mm long, lens-shaped.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Dry disturbed areas and waste places in the montane zone; infrequent in S BC; throughout N. America, S. America and the Old World.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


The climate type for this species, as reported in the: "British Columbia plant species codes and selected attributes. Version 6 Database" (Meidinger et al. 2008), is not evaluated, unknown or variable.

Synonyms and Alternate Names

Amaranthus albus var. pubescens (Uline & Bray) Fernald
Amaranthus graecizans L.
Amaranthus graecizans var. pubescens Uline & Bray
Amaranthus pubescens (Uline & Bray) Rydb.

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References