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Mountain Sandwort Minuartia groenlandica


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Mountain Sandwort
credit: Natural Resources Canada/CCSA

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Alternate name: Greenland Stitchwort, Mountain Daisy

Family: Caryophyllaceae, Carnation view all from this family

Description A mat-forming plant with many small white flowers at tips of slender stalks rising from dense tufts of basal leaves.
Habit: native perennial herb; taprooted; forms extensive linked clumps.
Height: 1-5 in (25-125 mm).
Leaf: in dense basal rosette, linear or needle, 0.2-0.6 in (4-15 mm) long, 0.02 in (0.5 mm) wide; on stem, opposite, in 3-5 pairs.
Flower: small, white, 5-parted
Fruit: capsule.

Flower June to September.

Habitat Dry, wind-swept areas: Granite crevices, rocky and gravelly slopes, ledges in alpine areas, cracks in exposed bedrock, mountain sites; to 6000 ft (1800 m).

Range Northwest Territories and Greenland, south to Maine, west to New York and Ontario; also found, but rare, in mountains of the Carolinas, Virginia and Tennessee.

Discussion Also known as Greenland stichwort, mountain daisy. Protected in Maine and Tennessee. This delicate plant with arctic affinities is often tucked into rock outcrops. On Mount Washington in New Hampshire, it is called Mountain Daisy. It was formerly placed in the genus Arenaria, with the other sandworts.