Author: Jan Scholten
Names: Salsola tragus, Salsola australis; Salsola brachypteris; Salsola aptera.
English: Saltwort; Russian Thistle.
Salsola is uprooted, broken off, blown about by the wind. The reaction is not hold on and grow new roots, but like “Okay, I do not want to have a home, I surrender to the wind, I keep moving around”.
Actually, nobody likes the tumbleweed. The cows don't eat it, because it is prickly, not beautiful, actually it is ugly and it is ugly to deal with when you have to. The only thing you can do with it is to burn it once it's dry. If any possible, you just ignore it. In movies it symbolises usually ruins, a ghost town, something lost. They are rolling along the streets of a ghost town, you will not see it in scenes of a live Western town.
These aspects all point to Stage 16.
It prefers disturbed areas and is often the first and only colonizer in habitats where no other plants can grow. It is the primary plant species in the Sedan crater, a huge crater created by a nuclear blast in 1962 in Nevada. Analysis in 1993 observed that the original perennial shrubs once living there had shown no recovery.
The green to red stems are lined with rigid, leathery, needlelike, spine-tipped leaves.
The plant dries out, then breaks off at the base and is carried about by the wind, the dry fruits and seeds dropping off as it rolls.