from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun Any of several resinous western North American plants of the genus Madia and closely related genera of the composite family, having yellow flower heads and sticky aromatic foliage.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A viscid rosaceous plant, Chamæbatia foliolosa, with feathery leaves and strawberry-like blossoms, abundant in California. It fills the air with a not very pleasant balsamic odor. Also called mountain misery and bear-clover.
  • noun Any one of various glandular, viscid, and heavy-scented plants of the genus Madia, of the similar Hemizonia, or of Grindelia, otherwise called gum-plant.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun (Bot.) A name given to several resinous-glandular composite plants of California, esp. to the species of Grindelia, Hemizonia, and Madia.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun Any of various American flowering plants that have sticky leaves

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun any of various western American plants of the genus Grindelia having resinous leaves and stems formerly used medicinally; often poisonous to livestock
  • noun any of various resinous glandular plants of the genus Madia; of western North and South America


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

tar +‎ weed


  • We tried him at sun-up, an 'again at sundown, an' nights too, laying in the chaparral an 'tarweed, an' scouting up an 'down that blame river, till we were sore.

    The Passing of Cock-Eye Blacklock

  • The valley swam under a haze of pure heat; a buzzard hung motionless over the cabin, and the dry air was sweet with resinous scent of pines and manzanita and even of tarweed.


  • Grasshoppers whirred everywhere; squirrels whistled; occasional little dust-devils whirled up the now thoroughly dry river-bed and the atmosphere was redolent of the aroma of dust and tarweed.

    The Pride of Palomar

  • The resinous paradisiacal smell of tarweed and bay-tree refreshed us, and the wonder of life was a something strong and tangible like bread and wine.

    It, and Other Stories

  • He looked down upon his clothes, stuccoed with tarweed burrs and wet mud.

    Stanford Stories Tales of a Young University

  • The autumn rains came and the dry, sniffly dust of the campus lay flat under the quiet air; the clear, fall weather that is mixed in one's mind with the pungent smell of tarweed in the pasture lands, and with long exciting afternoon practices, hung cool over the land, and still Pellams went girling, with his beautiful joke on the college.

    Stanford Stories Tales of a Young University

  • And the tinkle of pleasant waters, the song of a meadow lark, the distant mellow lowing of cows came to his ears; the smell of tarweed and of pines mingled in his nostrils.

    The Killer

  • The Douglas squirrels scampered and barked; the birds twittered and flashed or slanted in long flight through the trees; the sun shone soft; a cool breeze ruffled the feathery tips of the tarweed.

    The Rules of the Game

  • Up the slope they galloped, whirled around the end of the fire line, and began eagerly to lick up the tarweed and needles of the ridge-top.

    The Rules of the Game

  • The meadow at the back was gay with mariposa lilies, melodious with bees and birds, aromatic with the mingled essences of tarweed, lads-love, and the pines.

    The Killer


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