E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia

Draba lonchocarpa Rydb.
lance-fruited draba (lance-fruited whitlow-grass; lancepod draba; spear-fruited draba)
Brassicaceae (Mustard family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Jamie Fenneman  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #25634)

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Distribution of Draba lonchocarpa
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Species Information

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Tufted perennial herb from a taproot; stems tufted, 1-12 cm tall, glabrous to finely feltlike and woolly with starlike hairs.
Usually all basal, linear to oblanceolate or egg-shaped, 0.5-1.5 cm long, 1-5 mm wide, densely feltlike and woolly with starlike hairs, toothed, midribs firm and withering but persistent; stem leaves lacking or sometimes 1-2.
Racemes 3- to 15-flowered; petals white, 2.5-4 mm long.
Silicles, (3) 7-12 (20) mm long, 1-2 (3.5) mm wide, linear to elliptic or narrowly oblong-oblanceolate, somewhat contorted, glabrous to starlike-hairy; fruiting stalks shorter than silicles; styles 0.2-0.5 mm long; seeds 8-30, about 1 mm long.
Three varieties occur in BC.

1. Stems with 1 or 2 leaves, usually more than 2 mm wide; silicles usually appressed to axis of the inflorescence; stems and stalks frequently hairy................ var. vestita O.E. Schulz

1. Stems leafless or rarely with 1 leaf, less than 2 mm wide; silicles usually spreading; upper stems and stalks usually glabrous.

2. Silicles more than 2 mm wide................. var. thompsonii (C.L. Hitchc.) Rollins

2. Silicles less than 2 mm wide............... var. lonchocarpa

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Mesic to dry meadows, cliffs and scree slopes in the subalpine and alpine zones; var. lonchocarpa - common throughout BC E of the Coast-Cascade Mountains, var. thompsonii - rare in and E of the Coast-Cascade Mountains south of 57degreeN, var. vestita - rare in coastal and west-central BC; var. lonchocarpa - N to AK, YT and NT, E to AB, and S to OR, MT and WY, var. thompsonii - S to N WA and var. vestita - N to SC AK.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Ecological Framework for Draba lonchocarpa

The table below shows the species-specific information calculated from
original data (BEC database) provided by the BC Ministry of Forests and Range.
(Updated August, 2013)

Site Information
Value / Class




Elevation (metres) 1055 2072 2560
Slope Gradient (%) 0 44 90
Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]
28 170 346
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
0 2 5
Modal Nutrient Regime
Number of field plots
 species was recorded in:
Modal BEC Zone Class
All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in: AT(8), BAFA(12), ESSF(11), ICH(1), IMA(8), MS(1)


The climate type for this species, as reported in the: "British Columbia plant species codes and selected attributes. Version 6 Database" (Meidinger et al. 2008), is not evaluated, unknown or variable.

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References