Page authors: Don Knoke, David Giblin
Geum rivale
purple avens, water avens

Distribution: Occurring east of the Cascades crest in the northeastern counties in Washington British Columbia to northeastern Washington, east to the Rocky Mountains, northern Great Plains, Great Lakes region and northeastern North America; circumboreal.

Habitat: Stream banks, lake shores, bogs and wet meadows from middle elevations to the subalpine.

Flowers: June-August

Origin: Native

Conservation Status: Sensitive in Washington (WANHP)


Pubescent, herbaceous perennial from scaly rhizomes, the flowering stems 4-6 dm. tall.


Leaves mostly basal, several, lyrate-pinnatifid, up to 3 dm. long, the leaflets once or twice serrate, the three terminal leaflets much larger than the others; cauline leaves 3-5, reduced, pinnatifid below to deeply 3-lobed above.


Inflorescence open, 3- to 7-flowered, nodding in bud; calyx broadly cup-shaped, reddish-purple, the 5 lobes lanceolate and pointed, erect, 10 mm. long, alternating with 5 small, simple bracteoles; petals 5, yellow to pinkish, 2-3 mm. shorter than the sepals; stamens about 100; pistils numerous, the styles strongly bent and jointed.


Achenes elliptic, 3-4 mm. long, stiff-hairy, the lower joint of the style 6-8 mm. long, hooked at the tip, the upper joint 3-4 mm. long, deciduous.

Accepted Name:
Geum rivale L.
Publication: Sp. Pl. 1: 501. 1753.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
(none provided)
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Geum rivale in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Geum rivale checklist entry.

E-Flora BC: Geum rivale atlas page.

CalPhotos: Geum rivale photos.

USDA Plants: Geum rivale information.

8 photographs:
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