Indian paintbrush


: any of a genus (Castilleja) of chiefly American herbaceous plants of the snapdragon family that have brightly colored bracts

called also painted cup


Illustration of Indian paintbrush

Illustration of indian paintbrush

Examples of Indian paintbrush in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Hikers can enjoy the coastal sage scrub vegetation, including blooming plants like Indian paintbrush, California broom and black sage. Maura Fox, San Diego Union-Tribune, 1 Apr. 2024 The federally endangered Bear Valley sandwort, Ash-gray Indian paintbrush, and southern mountain wild-buckwheat are no match for the cascading impacts of soil disturbances caused by burros on the move. Louis Sahagún, Los Angeles Times, 17 Sep. 2023 The trails are generally free of snow, warm weather blankets the alpine, and meadows of fiery wavy-leaf Indian paintbrush and fuchsia monkeyflowers burst into bloom. Emily Pennington, Condé Nast Traveler, 13 June 2023 The Indian paintbrush is Wyoming's state flower. Olivia Munson, USA TODAY, 5 Feb. 2023 And there is Indian paintbrush that’s a reddish orange. Joanne Kempinger Demski, Journal Sentinel, 30 June 2022 Other blooms include golden-beard penstemon, Indian paintbrush, yarrow and goldeneye. Roger Naylor, The Arizona Republic, 24 Feb. 2022 You are humbled by the leviathan Sierra peaks, overwhelmed by the beauty of blooming Indian paintbrush, the intricate coloration of these wild trout, or the softness of summer meadows blanketed in moss heather. San Diego Union-Tribune, 30 Oct. 2021 Above the meadow strewn with Indian paintbrush flowers, the constellations seemed to swirl together in a swallowing immensity. Washington Post, 8 Oct. 2021

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'Indian paintbrush.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1892, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of Indian paintbrush was in 1892

Dictionary Entries Near Indian paintbrush

Cite this Entry

“Indian paintbrush.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition

Indian paintbrush

: any of a large genus of mostly American herbs that have spikes of flowers with brightly colored bracts
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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