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

Scleranthus annuus L.
annual knawel (German knotgrass)
Caryophyllaceae (Pink family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Ryan Batten  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #23939)

E-Flora BC Static Map
Distribution of Scleranthus annuus
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Species Information

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Annual or biennial herb from a slender taproot; stems prostrate to ascending, several, few branched above, glabrous to short-hairy, 2.5-15 cm tall/long.
Basal and stem leaves opposite, awl-like, 5-20 mm long, slightly papery-margined near their shortly fused bases; stipules lacking.
Inflorescence of solitary flowers in stem forks, or in a terminal or axillary cluster; petals lacking; sepals usually 5, fused for 1/2 their length into a bell-shaped, 10-nerved tube, green or whitish, the lobes lanceolate, abruptly sharp-pointed, 1.5-2 mm long, glabrous.
Inflated bladders, egg-shaped, 1-seeded, enclosed by the hardened calyx tube.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Dry roadsides, fields and waste places in the lowland, steppe and montane zones; infrequent in S BC; introduced from Eurasia.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Ecological Framework for Scleranthus annuus

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) 515 864 1153
Slope Gradient (%) 8 16 24
Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]
150 181 345
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
0 1 4
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: ICH(1), IDF(2)


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.

Synonyms and Alternate Names

Scleranthus annuus subsp. annuus

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References