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

Atriplex gmelinii C.A. Mey.
Gmelin's orache (Gmelin's saltbush)
Amaranthaceae (Amaranth family)
(Previously in Chenopodiaceae)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Curtis Bjork  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #15948)

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Distribution of Atriplex gmelinii
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Species Information

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Annual herb from a taproot; stems decumbent to erect, freely branched, 0.1-1.0 m tall/long.
Lower leaves opposite, upper leaves alternate, stalked or stalkless, lanceolate to oblong or rounded, 2-10 cm long, the bases smooth or toothed, covered with a whitish mealy substance when young but becoming glabrous and greenish with maturity.
Inflorescence of terminal or axillary spikes or panicles; pistillate bracteoles only slightly thickened basally or not at all, largest ones strap-shaped or narrowly egg-shaped, 4-12 mm long.
Membranous pericarps; seeds erect, 1.5-2.7 mm long.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Moist to mesic shorelines in the lowland zone; infrequent along the coast; N to AK.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Additional Notes

"The genus Atriplex, commonly called orache, atriplex or saltbush, of the family Chenopodiaceae (the goosefoot family), comprises nearly 200 species. The genus has a worldwide distribution, occurring on all continents except Antarctica. Most of the species are halophytes of coastal or inland saline habitats; a few are widespread ruderals of disturbed ground." (Bassett et al. 1983).


Bassett, I. J., C. W. Crompton, J. McNeill and P. M. Taschereau. 1983. The genus Atriplex (Chenopodiaceae) in Canada. Monograph #31, Agriculture Canada, Ottawa.


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

Atriplex gmelinii var. zosterifolia (Hook.) Moq.
Atriplex patula subsp. obtusa (Cham.) H.M. Hall & Clem.
Atriplex patula subsp. zosterifolia
Atriplex patula var. obtusa (Cham.) M. Peck
Atriplex patula var. zosterifolia (Hook.) C.L. Hitchc.

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References