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

Spergula arvensis L.
corn-spurry (corn spurry; stickwort)
Caryophyllaceae (Pink family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Jamie Fenneman  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #6696)

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Distribution of Spergula arvensis
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Species Information

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Annual herb from a taproot; stems prostrate to erect, several, branched, more or less glandular-hairy, yellowish-green, 10-60 cm tall/long.
Basal leaves few, soon deciduous; stem leaves in whorls of 6, narrowly linear, channelled beneath, 1.5-5 cm long, less than 1 mm wide, 1-nerved; stipules small, deciduous.
Inflorescence of numerous and usually terminal flowers on branched clusters; petals 5, white, egg-shaped, 3-6 mm long; sepals 5, greenish, egg-shaped, 2-5 mm long, glandular-hairy.
Capsules egg-shaped, 2.5-6 mm long, 5-valved; seeds black, plump, 1.2-1.5 mm long, minutely roughened.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Mesic to dry fields and waste places in the lowland and lower montane zones; common in SW BC, rare elsewhere in S BC; introduced from Eurasia.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


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

Spergula arvensis subsp. arvensis L. [superfluous autonym]
Spergula arvensis subsp. sativa (Boenn.) Celak.
Spergula arvensis var. sativa (Boenn.) Mert. & Koch
Spergula sativa Boenn.

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References