Page authors: Don Knoke, David Giblin
Gaultheria hispidula
creeping snowberry

Distribution: Occurring east of the Cascades crest in northeastern Washsington; British Columbia to Washington and Idaho, east across Canada to the Great Lakes region and northeastern North America.

Habitat: Sphagnum bogs and deep coniferous woods.

Flowers: May-June

Origin: Native

Growth Duration: Perennial

Conservation Status: Sensitive in Washington (WANHP)


Creeping, slender-stemmed shrub, the stems with somewhat appressed, brownish-bristly hairs.


Leaves elliptic to obovate, leathery, entire, revolute, 4-10 mm. long, with petioles 1.5-2.5 mm. long, the blades brownish-bristly on the lower surface.


Flowers mostly axillary and single, subtended by two ovate bracts that are longer than the calyx; corolla bell-shaped, deeply 4-lobed; stamens 8, the filaments flattened, the anthers opening by 2 large, lateral pores.


Berry a clear white, 3-5 mm. thick, surrounded by the calyx, juicy, spicy, aromatic.

Accepted Name:
Gaultheria hispidula (L.) Muhl. ex Bigelow
Publication: Fl. Boston. (ed. 2). 165. 1824.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
Chiogenes hispidula (L.) Torr. & A. Gray
Vaccinium hispidulum Michx., invalid name
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Gaultheria hispidula in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Gaultheria hispidula checklist entry.

E-Flora BC: Gaultheria hispidula atlas page.

CalPhotos: Gaultheria hispidula photos.

USDA Plants: Gaultheria hispidula information.

1 photographs:
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