Pyrola picta Sm.
white-veined wintergreen (Nootka wintergreen; whiteveined wintergreen)
Ericaceae (Crowberry family)
(Previously in Pyrolaceae)

Introduction to Vascular Plants


© Virginia Skilton     (Photo ID #2722)


E-Flora BC Static Map

Distribution of Pyrola picta
Click here to view the full interactive map and legend

Species Information

Perennial herb from slender rhizomes; sterile shoots with several, or a rosette of, leaves; flowering stems 1 to several, 10-30 cm tall, with several lance-shaped bracts.
Sometimes leafless; usually with at least a few basal leaves, evergreen, leathery, elliptic to egg-shaped (or oblanceolate), the blades 2-7 cm long, pointed or rounded at the tip, blunt to pointed at the base, entire to minutely-toothed, upper surfaces often dark green and greyish-mottled along the main veins, sometimes pale green and not mottled, lower surfaces often purple, sometimes bluish-waxy when young; stalks to 7 cm long.
Inflorescence a 5- to 25-flowered terminal raceme, the flowers about 1 cm wide, weakly bilaterally symmetric; flower stalks spreading, 4-10 mm long, from linear to lanceolate bracts less than length of stalks; corollas open, the petals yellowish or greenish-white to purplish, oval to egg-shaped, 6-8 mm long; sepals green to reddish, triangular to egg-shaped, about 2 mm long, tips pointed; anthers 2-5.5 mm long, sharp-pointed on the lower tips, pores on the sides of short tubes; styles declined, curved, about 10 mm long.
Capsules, globe-shaped, up to 5 mm wide.

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.


Ecological Framework for Pyrola picta

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)
692 0 1590
Slope Gradient (%)
26 0 150

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

212 0 360
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
3 0 8
Modal Nutrient Regime
# of field plots
 species was recorded in:
Modal BEC Zone Class

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

BWBS(12), CWH(154), ESSF(4), ICH(112), IDF(59), MH(2), MS(20), SBS(4)

Habitat and Range

Dry to mesic forests in the lowland and montane zones; frequent in SW BC, infrequent in SE BC; E to SW AB, and S to ID, MT, CO, and CA.

SourceThe Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Synonyms and Alternate Names:
Pyrola aphylla var. leptosepala Nutt.
Pyrola aphylla var. paucifolia T.J. Howell
Pyrola blanda Andres
Pyrola conardiana Andres
Pyrola dentata Sm.
Pyrola dentata var. apophylla Copeland
Pyrola dentata var. integra Gray
Pyrola pallida Greene
Pyrola paradoxa Andres
Pyrola picta subsp. dentata (Sm.) Piper
Pyrola picta subsp. integra (Gray) Piper
Pyrola picta subsp. pallida Andres
Pyrola picta var. dentata (Sm.) Dorn
Pyrola septentrionalis Andres
Pyrola sparsifolia Suksd.