Common Herb Species of the Northwest Forest






Terminology | Pictorial

Pyrola virens
Green Pyrola
"Green Wintergreen"

Pyrolaceae (Wintergreen Family)

Green Pyrola Description

General - a spall perennial from fleshy roots; stems growing up to 30 cm tall (usually 10 - 20 cm); leafless; sheathing bracts rare.

Leaves - single (rarely 2) at stem base, 4 - 12 cm long, egg- to lance-shaped, broadest above middle; blunt-tipped, tapers to base.

Flowers - 3 - 12 in loose, slender cluster at stem tip; greenish white to yellowish green; upper sepal broad, rounded; other sepals and petals lance-shaped; lip narrow, 5 - 8 mm long; spur slender, tapering, same length or shorter than lip; appearing in mid-summer.

Fruit - erect, many-seeded, ellipsoid, up to 1 cm long capsules; ripening late-summer.


Bogs, fens, swamps and moist to wet woods; widespread across boreal forest north to tundra; more or less circumpolar; prefers dry/fresh, upland forest habitats.


Wintergreens grow best in their natural habitat. They produce very few feeding roots along their spreading underground stems, and these grow in association with special fungi. Transplanting destroys the delicate roots, and the garden environment is unlikely to have the same fungi that are found in the forest.

Return to Top of Page

Home | Forest Capital of Canada | About Our Website |
Ontario's North (West) Forest | Boreal Forests of the World | North (West) Forest Industry |
World Links and Resources | "Forest Finder" Search Engine | Educational Resources |
What's Happening | Contacts | Site Map |