Bitterbrush is an extensively-branched, deciduous shrub that grows up to six feet tall. It produces many small three-lobed leaves, similar to those of sagebrush but lacking the gray, woolly hair, and brighter and more of an olive-green in color. The leaves are so tiny that the outline of the shrub’s limbs is distinctive.

Western serviceberry derives its common name not from “serving” but from Sorbus, the Latin name for mountain-ash, because its leaves look much like mountain-ash. It is a large, variable-sized, common shrub in the Sage Hills. In spring, it bears many attractive and fragrant white flowers.