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

Packera cana (Hook.) W.A. Weber & Á. Löve
woolly groundsel
Asteraceae (Aster family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Virginia Skilton  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #21607)

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Distribution of Packera cana
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Species Information

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Perennial herb from a branched, woody stem-base and often a short taproot; stems erect, several, branched above, 10-40 cm tall, white woolly-hairy but less so with age.
Basal and lowermost stem leaves tufted, narrowly oblanceolate to more elliptic, stalked, 1-5 cm long, 0.4-4.5 cm wide, entire to irregularly lobed, strongly white woolly-hairy; middle and upper stem leaves toothed, becoming unstalked and reduced upwards.
Heads with ray and disk flowers, several in a rounded inflorescence, with woolly-hairy bases; involucres 4-8 mm tall; involucral bracts unequal, lanceolate, margins translucent, long-hairy, also with a terminal tuft of hairs; ray flowers yellow, 6-13 mm long, rarely lacking; disk flowers yellow.
Achenes oblong, ribbed, glabrous; pappus of white hairlike bristles.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

USDA Species Characteristics

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

Habitat / Range

Mesic to dry grasslands, shrublands, rock outcrops and scree slopes in the steppe to alpine zones; common in S BC east of the Coast-Cascade Mountains; E to S SK and S to NE, CO and CA.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Ecological Framework for Packera cana

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) 260 1057 2300
Slope Gradient (%) 0 31 90
Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]
5 206 360
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
0 2 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: AT(1), BAFA(1), BG(73), ESSF(19), ICH(1), IDF(66), IMA(2), MS(44), PP(36), SBPS(1), SBS(2)


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

Senecio canus Hook.
Senecio convallium Greenm.
Senecio hallii Britton
Senecio hallii var. discoidea W.A. Weber
Senecio harbourii Rydb.
Senecio howellii Greene
Senecio purshianus Nutt.

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References