Claytonia perfoliata Donn ex Willd.
Montiaceae (Purslane family)
(Previously in Portulacaceae)

Introduction to Vascular Plants


© RĂ©al Sarrazin     (Photo ID #26683)


E-Flora BC Static Map

Distribution of Claytonia perfoliata
Click here to view the full interactive map and legend

Species Information

Annual herb from a slender taproot; stems ascending to erect, simple, several, 1-35 cm tall.
Basal leaves few to many, spreading to erect, more or less equal in size, elliptic to round-deltate, the blades 0.5-4 cm long, tapered abruptly to the stalk, the stalks up to 20 cm long; stem leaves paired, opposite, fused on both margins, forming a disk less than 5 cm wide.
Inflorescence of whorled racemes with 5-40 flowers on stalks 1-10 cm long or unstalked, with one bract subtending the lowest flower; petals 5, white or pinkish, 2-6 mm long; sepals 2, 1.5-5 mm long.
Capsules; seeds 3, round to egg-shaped, black, shiny, smooth (at 20x magnification), the appendages white, fleshy, 1-2.7 mm long.

SourceThe Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


If more than one illustration is available for a species (e.g., separate illustrations were provided for two subspecies) then links to the separate images will be provided below. Note that individual subspecies or varietal illustrations are not always available.

USDA Species Characteristics

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


Ecological Framework for Claytonia perfoliata

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)
512 20 1824
Slope Gradient (%)
35 0 119

Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]

182 2 360
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
2 0 7
Modal Nutrient Regime
# of field plots
 species was recorded in:
Modal BEC Zone Class

All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in

BG(2), CDF(45), CWH(11), ESSF(4), ICH(13), IDF(28), PP(17), SBS(1)

Habitat and Range

Moist, sandy vernal sites, meadows, thickets and forests in the lowland, steppe and montane zones; frequent in SW and SE BC, infrequent in SC BC; S to SD, MT, UT, AZ and MX, also known from AK.

SourceThe Illustrated Flora of British Columbia