A state of dramatic peaks and mountains, Nevada is dry and dusty, but also truly beautiful with its often barren landscape. Throughout the rocks and dry stream-beds in Nevada, you’ll find the state flower growing in abundance. Sagebrush has a rich and heady herb scent and grows easily in this, one of the driest states in the nation. The state flower of Nevada was officially declared sagebrush in 1917 with additional adoptions and resolutions to ensure its position in 1959 and 1967.
The state flower of Nevada is really more of a shrub or small tree. One of the hardiest plants, sagebrush is coarse with a silver or gray shade to its needle-like leaves. The sagebrush does produce flowers that are tiny and yellow in certain portions of the year. Growing very well in barren areas, sage brush is the most common vegetation found throughout the Great Basin desert and can grow up to ten feet in height.
The fragrant sagebrush is common throughout the southwest and grows from Nevada and Arizona up into Canada following the driest regions. While common, sagebrush is not ideal for livestock grazing but is beautiful as you hike through the deserts in these rural areas. If you walk through the desert in the summer months, you’ll find long stems of yellow flowers as the sagebrush flowers in June.
Sagebrush is “hopelessly common” in Nevada earning it the distinction of being the state flower. To grow sagebrush anywhere else, you need simply plant a small specimen in a spot that is very sunny and very well drained. The sagebrush can grow to be up to ten feet tall, but it grows very slowly taking years to even grow a foot or two making it a nice addition to a garden for its fragrance and striking colors.