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

Arnica latifolia Bong.
mountain arnica (broadleaf arnica)
Asteraceae (Aster family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Rosemary Taylor  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #60572)

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Distribution of Arnica latifolia
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Species Information

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Perennial herb from a horizontal underground stem; stems erect, solitary or occasionally a few clustered together, sparsely hairy, 20-60 cm tall.
Basal leaves smaller than the stem leaves and often deciduous by flowering time, often produced on separate short shoots; stem leaves opposite, 2-4 (sometimes 5) pairs, egg-shaped to lanceolate, 6-14 cm long, 1.5-8.0 cm wide, often becoming narrower and smaller above, thinly hairy and usually sparsely to densely glandular, stalked below, unstalked above, usually coarsely toothed.
Heads with ray and disk flowers, 1-3, the bases sparsely to moderately hairy with long white or yellow hairs, often glandular; involucres 8-18 mm tall; involucral bracts lanceolate to oblanceolate, sparsely to densely hairy, often glandular, the tips fringed; ray flowers yellow, 8-12, with conspicuous teeth; disk flowers yellow.
Achenes 4-8 mm long, usually glabrous below and sparsely hairy above or glabrous throughout; pappus white, finely-barbed.
Hybridizes with A. cordifolia, numerous intermediates may be encountered.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

USDA Species Characteristics

Flower Colour:
Blooming Period:
Early Summer
Fruit/Seed characteristics:
Colour: Brown
Present over the Summer
Source:  The USDA

Habitat / Range

Mesic to dry forests, meadows and rocky slopes in the lowland to alpine zones; common throughout BC; E to AB and S to WY and WA.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Ecological Framework for Arnica latifolia

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) 5 1696 2555
Slope Gradient (%) 0 25 300
Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]
0 260 360
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
0 3 8
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(95), BAFA(44), BG(1), BWBS(42), CMA(23), CWH(14), ESSF(3029), ICH(107), IDF(36), IMA(50), MH(65), MS(141), PP(1), SBPS(3), SBS(67), SWB(23)

Ecological Indicator Information

A shade-intolerant, montane to subalpine, Asian and Western North American forb distributed equally in the Pacific and Cordilleran regions. Occurs in alpine tundra and boreal climates on fresh to very moist, nitrogen-medium soils. Plentiful to abundant in meadow-like communities, and scattered in open-canopy coniferous forests on high-elevation water-shedding and water-receiving (seepage and stream-edge) sites. Often inhabits exposed mineral soil. Characteristic of alpine and subalpine communities.

SourceIndicator Plants of Coastal British Columbia (Information applies to coastal locations only)


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 alpine tundra & boreal.

Synonyms and Alternate Names

Arnica latifolia var. angustifolia Herder

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References