Silene lemmonii S.Watson
Family: Caryophyllaceae
Silene lemmonii image
Patrick Alexander  
Plants perennial; taproot stout; caudex much-branched, woody, producing short, decumbent, leafy sterile shoots and erect flowering shoots. Stems 15-45 cm, pubes-cent and glandular-viscid distally, sparsely pubescent to ± glabrous proximally. Leaves mostly in dense basal tufts; basal blades oblanceolate to elliptic, 1-3.5 cm × 3-10 mm, narrowed to base, apex acute, scabrous-puberulent to subglabrous; cauline in 2-3 pairs, distal sessile, reduced, blade linear-lanceolate to lanceolate, 1.5-4 cm × 2-6 mm. Inflorescences cymose, (1-)3-5(-7)-flowered, open, bracteate, bracteolate, pubescent and viscid with stipitate glands; cyme open, slender-branched; bracts and bracteoles narrowly lanceolate, 2-15 mm, herbaceous. Pedicels divaricate, often curved near apex and/or at base, slender, 1/ 2-2 times longer than calyx. Flowers: calyx prominently 10-veined, campanulate, 6-10 × 2-4 mm in flower, broadening in fruit and becoming obconic with ± constricted base, ± as broad as long, pubescent and glandular, veins parallel, with pale commissures, lobes triangular, 1-2 mm, margins broad, membranous, apex acute; corolla yellowish white, sometimes tinged with pink, clawed, claw equaling or longer than calyx, limb deeply lobed, lobes 4, linear, 4-8 mm, appendages 2, narrow, ca. 1 mm; stamens exserted, equaling petals; styles 3, filamentous, much longer than petals and stamens, exceeding 2 times calyx. Capsules obovoid, equaling calyx and often splitting it, opening by 6 recurved teeth; carpophore 2-3 mm. Seeds rusty brown, often with gray bloom, broadly reniform, 1-1.8 mm, coarsely papillate. 2n = 48. Flowering spring-summer. Woodlands and forests, often in moist situations; 200-2800 m; Calif., Oreg. Silene lemmonii has typical moth-pollinated flowers. It is closely related to S. bridgesii and appears to intergrade with it. However, the small size of S. lemmonii and the presence of a compact growth of short, leafy sterile shoots usually distinguish it from S. bridgesii.

Silene lemmonii image
Patrick Alexander  
Silene lemmonii image
Patrick Alexander  
Silene lemmonii image
Silene lemmonii image
Silene lemmonii image
Silene lemmonii image
Silene lemmonii image
Silene lemmonii image