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

Valeriana scouleri Rydb.
Scouler's valerian
Caprifoliaceae (Valerian family)
(Previously in Valerianaceae)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Jamie Fenneman  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #16348)

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Distribution of Valeriana scouleri
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Species Information

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Perennial herb from a stout rhizome or branched stem-base with fibrous roots; stems ascending to erect, solitary, simple, smooth except hairy at the nodes, 15-70 cm tall.
Basal leaves spoon-shaped or pinnately cleft with 1-2 pairs of lateral segments up to 3 cm long and 1.5 cm wide, enlarged terminal segment up to 8 cm long and 4 cm wide, leaves stalked; stem leaves few, smaller, opposite, entire or slightly toothed, 2-4 pairs, short-stalked.
Inflorescence a compact, flat-topped cluster with usually male/female flowers; corollas white or pink, 5-9 mm long, lobed, the lobes 1/2 as long as the tube; calyces with 12-18 feathery segments; stamens well exserted.
Achenes, lanceolate to more oblong or linear, 5-6 mm long, 1-2 mm wide, smooth.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Wet to moist woodlands, streamsides, cliffs and meadows in the lowland, steppe and montane zones; infrequent in SW BC south of 51degreeN, rare eastward; E to SW AB and S to NW CA.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Ecological Framework for Valeriana scouleri

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) 565 1071 2140
Slope Gradient (%) 0 35 90
Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]
236 265 290
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
2 3 4
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: CWH(3), ESSF(1)

Ecological Indicator Information

Shade-tolerant/intolerant, submontane to alpine, Western North American forb distributed equally in the Pacific and Cordilleran regions. Occurs on fresh to very moist, nitrogen-rich soils within boreal, cool temperate, and cool mesothermal climates. Sporadic in meadow-like communities and coniferous forests on water-receiving and water­collecting sites. Usually associated with Athyrium filix­femina, Gymnocarpium dryopteris, Lonicera utahensis, Optopanax horridus, and Streptopus roseus. A nitrophytic species characteristic of Moder and Mull humus forms.

SourceIndicator Plants of Coastal British Columbia (Information applies to coastal locations only)


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

Valeriana sitchensis subsp. scouleri (Rydb.) F.G. Mey.
Valeriana sitchensis var. scouleri (Rydb.) M.E. Jones

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References