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

Grindelia squarrosa (Pursh) Dunal
curly-cup gumweed (curlycup gumweed)
Asteraceae (Aster family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Mark Gardiner  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #66583)

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Distribution of Grindelia squarrosa
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Species Information

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Biennial or short-lived perennial herb from a taproot and often a stout, branched stem-base; stems erect, several, branched, glabrous, 10 to 100 cm tall.
Basal leaves soon deciduous; stem leaves alternate, closely and evenly toothed or entire, hairless, middle and upper mostly clasping, often sticky with resin.
Heads with ray and disk flowers, solitary or in a flat-topped cluster; ray flowers yellow, 25-40, 7-15 mm long; involucres 1-9 mm tall; involucral bracts strongly resinous, regularly graduated, the green tips reflexed.
Achenes nerved, usually squared off at the tip, glabrous, 2-3 mm long; pappus of several slender awns.
Three weakly defined varieties occur in BC and may be separated as follows:

1. Leaves entire or remotely toothed, the lower ones often irregularly toothed or somewhat pinnately cut.................... var. quasiperennis Lunell

1. Leaves closely and evenly toothed. 2. Upper and middle leaves 2-4 times as long as wide, mostly egg-shaped or oblong..................... var. squarrosa

2. Upper and middle leaves 5-8 times as long as wide, mostly linear-oblong to lanceolate.................. var. serrulata (Rydb.) Steyerm.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Dry roadsides and disturbed areas in the steppe and montane zones; frequent in SC and SE BC (var. quasiperennis), infrequent in S and NE BC (var. serrulata and squarrosa), the latter two possibly introduced; E to MN and S to TX and CA.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Ecological Framework for Grindelia squarrosa

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) 570 801 1270
Slope Gradient (%) 0 8 65
Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]
8 107 250
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
2 4 7
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: BG(7), IDF(7), PP(7)


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.

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References