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Common Shrub Species of the Northwest Forest

TREES

HERBS

GRAMINOIDS

FERNS & FERN-ALLIES

BROPHYTES & LICHENS

GLOSSARIES
Terminology | Pictorial

   
Kalmia polifolia
Bog Laurel
Ericaceae (Heath Family)

Description

General - erect or matted, evergreen shrubs, usually 30-40 cm tall; spreads by rooting branches and short rhizomes; branches slender, 2-edged.

Bog Laurel Leaves - opposite; narrowly lance-shaped, 2-4 cm long, dark green; leathery above; dense, short, white hairs below; edges rolled under.

Flowers - in loose clusters at branch tips; showy, long stalked, rose-pink, saucer-shaped, 15-20 mm across; 10 stamens, tip of each tucked into small pouch in petal and held under tension (like a catapult); appear in May to June.

Fruit - 5-valved, egg-shaped to round capsules, about 6 mm long, brown, with a long protruding style; appearing in July and August.

Habitat

Bogs and acidic lakeshores; widespread across NW Ontario's boreal forest north and west to central Yukon.

Notes

Can be confused with a non-flowering Bog Rosemary. However, the leaves of the Bog Rosemary are alternate and less lustrous than leaves of this species.

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