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Ipomoea leptophylla  Torr.
Ottawa County, Kansas
Height: 1-4 feet
Family: Convolvulaceae - Morning-glory Family
Flowering Period:   May, June, July
Also Called: Big-root morning-glory.
Stems: Erect to decumbent, bushy branching, glabrous.
Leaves: Alternate, simple, short-stalked, ascending, linear to narrowly lanceolate, 2 to 6 inches long, less than 1/3 inch wide, glabrous; margins entire; tips tapered to points.
Inflorescences: Clusters of 1-3 flowers, stalks 3 to 4 inches long, in leaf axils.
Flowers: Calyces 5-lobed, sepals unequal; corollas funnel-shaped, 2 to 3.5 inches long, somewhat 5-angled, pinkish lavender to purplish red, throats darker; stamens 5, unequal.
Fruits: Capsules, egg-shaped, long-pointed, smooth; seeds 1-4, densely hairy, brown.
Habitat: Dry prairies, disturbed sites, and roadsides, on sandy or gravelly soils.
Distribution: West two thirds of Kansas.
Uses: Great Plains Indians used bush morning-glory as an emergency food source. The roots can be boiled, baked, or roasted.
Comments: Bush-morning-glory is related to the sweet potato. It has a large, edible taproot that is usually 6-8 inches in diameter, up to 4 feet long, and can weigh 20-40 lbs. The bushy, upper portion of the plant can grow to several feet in diameter. Bush morning-glory is very drought resistant due to its large root system. Lateral roots can branch out 10-15 feet.

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