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Lyall's saxifrage, red-stem saxifrage

Habit Plants solitary or sometimes mat-forming, rhizomatous. Plants solitary or tufted, from caudex.
Leaves

basal;

petiole rounded to flattened, 2–10 cm;

blade spatulate to obovate, 0.8–8 cm, thin, base cuneate to slightly attenuate, margins serrate to dentate, eciliate or sparsely glandular-ciliate, surfaces abaxially glabrous, adaxially sparsely brown-hairy.

basal;

petiole flattened, 0.7–2.5 cm;

blade obtrullate or obovate to ovate, 0.8–2.5 cm, ± coriaceous, base attenuate to ± cuneate, margins serrate to dentate on distal 2/3, ciliate, surfaces tangled, reddish brown-hairy abaxially, glabrous or glabrate adaxially.

Inflorescences

usually 10–15-flowered, lax, cylindric thyrses, (red), (4–)7–30 cm, sparsely purple-tipped stipitate-glandular.

3–10-flowered, subcapitate to spicate cymes or thyrses, 2–10(–15) cm, glabrate to sparsely hairy proximally, ± densely purple-tipped stipitate-glandular distally.

Flowers

sepals reflexed, oblong to elliptic;

petals white, each with 2 basal yellowish green spots, elliptic to round, clawed, 2–5.5 mm, longer than sepals;

filaments club-shaped, (to 6 mm);

pistils connate 1/2+ their lengths;

ovary superior, (to 1/3 adnate to hypanthium).

sepals erect, reflexed in fruit, triangular to deltate;

petals white, not spotted, obovate, clawed, 1.5–2 mm, ± equaling sepals;

filaments linear, flattened;

pistils connate to 1/2 their lengths;

ovary 1/2 inferior, appearing more superior in fruit.

Capsules

green to yellow, distal 1/2 purple, ± folliclelike, (basally connate).

green, becoming reddish or purplish, folliclelike.

2n

= ca. 56, 58.

= 40.

Micranthes lyallii

Micranthes gaspensis

Phenology Flowering summer–early autumn. Flowering summer.
Habitat Wet, rocky meadows, mountain to alpine streamsides North- or west-facing, abrupt schist slopes, cliff bases, mossy or muddy areas, streamsides, seepages, cool ravines or chimneys
Elevation 800-4000 m [2600-13100 ft] 800-1100 m [2600-3600 ft]
Discussion

Although they have nearly disjunct sets of populations, the subspecies of Micranthes lyallii are difficult to distinguish from each other. The more northern plants tend to be larger with wider leaves and often have been called Saxifraga lyallii subsp. or var. hultenii. Apparent hybrids with M. odontoloma occur in Alberta, British Columbia, and northern Idaho, and near Glacier National Park, Montana.

(Discussion copyrighted by Flora of North America; reprinted with permission.)

Of conservation concern.

Micranthes gaspensis appears to be the stabilized hybrid derivative of M. nivalis and M. tenuis (C. Gervais et al. 1995), known only from the Shickshock Mountains of the Gaspé Peninsula; the chromosome number is intermediate between that of the parents (2n = 60 and 20, respectively), and seeds are fertile. Neither parent occurs any longer in the Gaspé Peninsula, and the plants appear to self-perpetuate.

F1 hybrids of the two parent species (also 2n = 40) occur in Yukon (D. L. Krause and K. I. Beamish 1973) and possibly at other locations throughout their range of sympatry, such as northern Quebec and Labrador; such hybrids will key out with Micranthes gaspensis. Individuals called Saxifraga rufopilosa (Hultén) A. E. Porsild [S. nivalis (Linnaeus) Small var. rufopilosa Hultén] from Yukon and Alaska (W. J. Cody 2000) also will key out here. These may represent either the F1 hybrids mentioned above or stabilized hybrid populations such as those in the Gaspé. It is possible that such stabilized populations would fit under the name M. gaspensis. A systematic study is needed before a taxonomic conclusion can be reached concerning their status.

(Discussion copyrighted by Flora of North America; reprinted with permission.)

Distribution
from FNA
AK; ID; MT; WA; AB; BC; NT; YT
[WildflowerSearch map]
[BONAP county map]
from FNA
QC
[BONAP county map]
Parent taxa Saxifragaceae > Micranthes Saxifragaceae > Micranthes
Sibling taxa
M. apetala, M. aprica, M. bryophora, M. californica, M. calycina, M. careyana, M. caroliniana, M. eriophora, M. ferruginea, M. foliolosa, M. fragosa, M. gaspensis, M. gormanii, M. hieraciifolia, M. hitchcockiana, M. howellii, M. idahoensis, M. integrifolia, M. marshallii, M. micranthidifolia, M. nelsoniana, M. nidifica, M. nivalis, M. nudicaulis, M. occidentalis, M. odontoloma, M. oregana, M. palmeri, M. pensylvanica, M. petiolaris, M. razshivinii, M. reflexa, M. rhomboidea, M. rufidula, M. spicata, M. stellaris, M. subapetala, M. tempestiva, M. tenuis, M. texana, M. tischii, M. tolmiei, M. unalaschcensis, M. virginiensis
M. apetala, M. aprica, M. bryophora, M. californica, M. calycina, M. careyana, M. caroliniana, M. eriophora, M. ferruginea, M. foliolosa, M. fragosa, M. gormanii, M. hieraciifolia, M. hitchcockiana, M. howellii, M. idahoensis, M. integrifolia, M. lyallii, M. marshallii, M. micranthidifolia, M. nelsoniana, M. nidifica, M. nivalis, M. nudicaulis, M. occidentalis, M. odontoloma, M. oregana, M. palmeri, M. pensylvanica, M. petiolaris, M. razshivinii, M. reflexa, M. rhomboidea, M. rufidula, M. spicata, M. stellaris, M. subapetala, M. tempestiva, M. tenuis, M. texana, M. tischii, M. tolmiei, M. unalaschcensis, M. virginiensis
Synonyms Saxifraga lyallii, Saxifraga lyallii subsp. hultenii, Saxifraga lyallii var. hultenii Saxifraga gaspensis
Name authority (Engler) Small: in N. L. Britton et al., N. Amer. Fl. 22: 143. 1905 , (Fernald) Small: in N. L. Britton et al., N. Amer. Fl. 22: 552. 1918 ,
Source Flora of North America vol. 8, p. 57. Flora of North America vol. 8, p. 65.
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