Lomatium triternatum (Pursh) J.M. Coult. & Rose
nine-leaved desert-parsley (nineleaf biscuitroot)

Introduction to Vascular Plants


© Bryan Kelly-McArthur     (Photo ID #85700)


E-Flora BC Static Map

Distribution of Lomatium triternatum
Click here to view the full interactive map and legend

Species Information

Perennial herb from an elongated taproot, seldom thickened, surmounted by a simple branched crown or stem-base; stems or scapes solitary or few, erect, 10-80 cm tall, glabrous.
Mostly basal, pinnately compound, divided 1-3 times or, at the base, 2-3 times; stem leaves 1 or more on the middle or upper stem; ultimate leaf segments narrow and scarcely leaflike, usually less than 5 mm wide, finely hairy.
Inflorescence of compound umbels; flowers yellow, spokes of the umbel elongating unequally, 2-10 cm long; involucels present.
Oblong to broadly elliptic, 7-15 mm long, narrowly to very broadly winged, glabrous to minutely hairy or granular-roughened.
Two subspecies occur in BC:

1. Fruits broadly elliptic, wings nearly or fully as wide as body; ultimate leaf segments linear................ ssp. platycarpum (Torr.) Cronq

1. Fruits usually relatively narrow, wings usually half as wide as body; ultimate leaf segments lanceolate..................... ssp. triternatum

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:
Early Spring
Fruit/Seed characteristics:
Colour: Brown
Present over the Spring
Source:  The USDA


Ecological Framework for Lomatium triternatum

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)
974 400 2286
Slope Gradient (%)
27 0 110

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

199 0 360
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

AT(2), BG(32), ESSF(35), ICH(25), IDF(143), MS(23), PP(147)

Habitat and Range

Dry open slopes and grasslands in the lowland, steppe and montane zones; frequent in SC and SE BC (ssp. triternatum), rare on S Vancouver Island (ssp. platycarpum); E to SW AB and S to CO, UT and CA.

SourceThe Illustrated Flora of British Columbia