Page author: David Giblin
Smelowskia ovalis
short-fruited smelowskia

Distribution: In the Cascade Mountains in Washington; British Columbia south to California.

Habitat: Rocky crevices, moraines, ridges and talus slopes in alpine and sup-alpine regions.

Flowers: June-August

Origin: Native

Growth Duration: Perennial

Conservation Status: Not of concern


Grayish, mat-forming perennial from a much-branched crown, the simple stems 3-18 cm. tall, the herbage with mixed pubescence, long, soft, and simple, and shorter and freely branched.


Basal leaves 0.5-2.5 cm. long, obovate, ovate, suborbicular, or oblong; petioles slender, 1-6 cm long, pubescent with branched hairs and longer, simple hairs; cauline leaves several, alternate, reduced.


Inflorescence a bractless, flat-topped raceme, becoming elongate in fruit; pedicles ascending; sepals 4, 2-2.5 mm. long, persistent; petals 4, usually white, rarely pinkish, spatulate to obovate, 3.5-4.5 mm. long; stamens 6; style about 0.5 mm. long, stigma discoid.


Siliques ovate to oblong, 2-6 mm. long and 2-3 mm. broad, glabrous, terete or slightly flattened, the valves 1-nerved; seeds in 1 series.

Accepted Name:
Smelowskia ovalis M.E. Jones
Publication: Proc. Calif. Acad. Sci. ser. 2. 5: 624. 1895. 1895.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
Smelowskia ovalis M.E. Jones var. ovalis
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Smelowskia ovalis in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Smelowskia ovalis checklist entry.

E-Flora BC: Smelowskia ovalis atlas page.

CalPhotos: Smelowskia ovalis photos.

USDA Plants: Smelowskia ovalis information.

18 photographs:
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