Page author: David Giblin
Phacelia heterophylla
varileaf phacelia, virgate phacelia
WTU specimens
Other herbaria

Distribution: Occurring on both sides of the Cascades in Washington; British Columbia south to California, east to Montana and New Mexico.

Habitat: Widespread in dry, open places from the foothills to mid-elevations in the mountains.

Flowers: May-July

Origin: Native

Conservation Status: Not of concern


Biennial or short-lived perennial from a taproot, with a single, erect, stout stem 2-12 dm. tall, sometimes surrounded by several ascending, smaller stems; herbage often with spreading bristles and glandular hairs.


Leaves narrowly elliptic, pointed, with 1 or 2 pairs of small leaflets at the base of the blade; petioles, but not blades, reduced upward.


Inflorescence elongate, densely bristly, the lower flower clusters with leafy bracts; calyx divided nearly to the base, lobes 5; corolla dull white, 5-lobed, 3-6 mm. long and broad, the filaments conspicuously exerted, hairy near the middle; style 2-cleft.


Fruit a capsule.

Accepted Name:
Phacelia heterophylla Pursh

Synonyms & Misapplications:
(none provided)
var. heterophylla – varileaf phacelia, virgate phacelia    More common east of the Cascades in Washington; British Columbia south to Oregon, east to Montana and south in the Rockies to Arizona.
var. virgata – varileaf phacelia, virgate phacelia
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Phacelia heterophylla in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Phacelia heterophylla checklist entry.

E-Flora BC: Phacelia heterophylla atlas page.

CalPhotos: Phacelia heterophylla photos.

USDA Plants: Phacelia heterophylla information.

30 photographs:
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