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

Pyrola minor L.
lesser wintergreen (snowline wintergreen)
Ericaceae (Crowberry family)
(Previously in Pyrolaceae)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Jamie Fenneman  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #25205)

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Distribution of Pyrola minor
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Species Information

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General:
Perennial herb from slender rhizomes; flowering stems usually single, 6-25 cm tall.
Leaves:
Evergreen, basal, egg-shaped to elliptic or nearly circular, the blades 1-3 cm long, 1.4-2.5 cm wide, rounded to almost heart-shaped at base, blunt at tip, entire to finely round-toothed; stalks 1-3 cm long.
Flowers:
Inflorescence a 5- to 20-flowered, somewhat crowded terminal raceme, the flowers 5-7 mm wide, more or less closed, radially symmetric; flower stalks 2-5 mm long; petals pale pinkish to rose, oval, 3.5-5 mm long; sepals pinkish, triangular-egg-shaped, 1-3 mm long; stamens converging, but not joined; anthers about 1 mm long, egg-shaped, pointed, the pores not on tubes; filaments thin, flattened; styles straight, included, 1-2 mm long, without a collar; stigmas 5-lobed.
Fruits:
Capsules, depressed globe-shaped, 5-6 mm wide.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Mesic to moist forests in the montane zone; frequent throughout BC, except the Queen Charlotte Islands; N to AK, YT, and NT, E to NF and S to S CA, NM, MN, and MA.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Ecology

Ecological Framework for Pyrola minor

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

Minimum

Average

Maximum

Elevation (metres) 6 1043 2190
Slope Gradient (%) 0 14 80
Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]
0 321 360
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
1 4 8
Modal Nutrient Regime
Class
C
Number of field plots
 species was recorded in:
449
Modal BEC Zone Class
SBS
All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in: BAFA(6), BWBS(70), CWH(27), ESSF(91), ICH(23), IDF(26), MH(7), MS(34), SBPS(8), SBS(117), SWB(14)

Climate

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 montane boreal & cool temperate.

Synonyms and Alternate Names

Braxilia minor (L.) House
Erxlebenia minor (L.) Rydb.
Pyrola minor var. parviflora B. Boivin

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

Related Databases

General References