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

Sagina procumbens L.
bird's-eye pearlwort (birdeye pearlwort)
Caryophyllaceae (Pink family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Rosemary Taylor  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #24704)

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Distribution of Sagina procumbens
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Species Information

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Biennial or perennial (sometimes flowering the first year) herb from a taproot and freely rooting stems; stems prostrate, several, branched, glabrous, 2-20 cm long.
Basal leaves 1-2.5 cm long, numerous in a dense persistent rosette; stem leaves opposite, usually linear, needle-pointed, 5-12 mm long, the upper ones sometimes minutely fringed, 2 to several of the pairs usually with secondary leaves clustered in their axils; stipules lacking.
Inflorescence of usually 2 to several flowers per stem; petals 4 or sometimes 5, less than 1 mm long or lacking; sepals 5 or more usually 4, egg-shaped, 1.5-2.5 mm long, spreading at time of capsules opening.
Capsules egg-shaped, 2-5 mm long, 4- or 5-valved; seeds about 0.3 mm long, not shiny.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Wet to moist roadsides, lawns, coastal cliffs and pond margins in the lowland and steppe zones; common in SW BC, less frequent northward along the coast and in SC BC; N to AK, E to NF and S to MI, MN, UT, CA and MX.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Ecological Framework for Sagina procumbens

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) 850 850 850
Slope Gradient (%) 1 20 40
Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]
226 225 226
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
3 3 3
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: IDF(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

Sagina procumbens var. compacta Lange

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References