Flora of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago

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S.G. Aiken, M.J. Dallwitz, L.L. Consaul, C.L. McJannet, R.L. Boles, G.W. Argus, J.M. Gillett, P.J. Scott, R. Elven, M.C. LeBlanc, L.J. Gillespie, A.K. Brysting, H. Solstad, and J.G. Harris

Sagina L.

English: Pearlwort.

Caryophyllaceae, Pink family.

Published in Sp. Pl. 128. 1753.

Synonymy. Spergella Rchb. in Mössler, Handb. Gewächsk., ed. 2, 1: lxv. 1827.

Vegetative morphology. Plants 1–10 cm high; perennial herbs; caespitose; sometimes vegetatively proliferating by bulbils on stems or leaves, or never vegetatively proliferating by bulbils on stems or leaves, in inflorescences, from gemmiphores and gemmae, or by fragmentation. Taproot present. Ground level or underground stems horizontal, or absent; stoloniferous (if applicable); elongate, or compact; 0.5–1.2 mm wide. Caudex absent. Aerial stems erect, or decumbent. Aerial stem trichomes spreading, or erect. Leaves distributed along the stems, or basal in a rosette; opposite; marcescent. Petioles absent. Leaf blade bases cuneate. Blades (2–)4–12(–25) mm long, 0.3–1.2 mm wide, spreading, linear, flat or folded, with inconspicuous veins. Blade adaxial surface dull, glabrous. Blade abaxial surface glabrous. Blade margins glabrous; apices acuminate, or acute.

Reproductive morphology. Plants bisexual, or bisexual and agamospermic. Flowering stems with leaves. Flowering stems hairy. Flowering stems pubescent. Flowering stem hairs simple; white or translucent; glandular hairs present. Flowers solitary, or in inflorescences. Inflorescences with flowers in a dichasium. Flowers per inflorescence (1–)2–3; small, or medium-sized. Sepals conventional; 5, or 4; free; 1.4–3.5(–4) mm wide; green, or green and purple; herbaceous, or herbaceous and scarious. Calyx glabrous, or hairy. Calyx hairs glandular; white or translucent (if applicable). Petals conventional; free; same length as the calyx, or longer than the calyx; 4, or 5; white; obovate, or lanceolate; unlobed; 1.4–6 mm long. Stamens 8–10; stamen filaments glabrous. Anthers yellow; ellipsoid, or ovoid; 0.2–1 mm long. Ovary superior; carpels 4, or 5; syncarpous. Ovaries ovate; glabrous. Styles present; 4, or 5; free; 0.4–3.5 mm long. Stigmas per ovary 1. Placentation free central. Ovules per ovary 8–25. Fruit with calyx persisting; dry; a capsule; ovoid; golden brown, or straw-coloured; 2–4.5 mm long; 1.5–3 mm wide; surface appearing veinless; dehiscent; opening with teeth at the top of the capsule (splitting almost to the base); teeth (4–)5 (usually). Seeds several; (0.4–)0.5–1 mm long; brown; surfaces verrucose.

Chromosome information. 2n = 52, or 56, or 70–74, or 77.

Illustrations. • Sagina caespitosa. Plant forming small, rather compact, hemispherical tufts that are 1–9 cm in diameter. Norway. Photograph by R. Elven. • Sagina nivalis. Plant in fruit, growing in disturbed ground at the edge of a road. Note flowering stems radiating from the base of a central rosette. Nunavut, Rankin Inlet, near the graveyard, 6248'N, 9206'W. Aiken and Brysting 01–046. CAN. • Sagina nodosa subsp. borealis. Flowering plant growing in dry, sun-baked dolomite gravel. Manitoba, Churchill, Beech Bay, in the tidal estuary of the Churchill River, south of the Port, 5844.30'N, 9408.06'W. Aiken and Brysting 01–032. CAN. Scale bar in cm.


This publication is available on the internet (posted May 2011) and on CD-ROM (published in 2007). These versions are identical in content, except that the errata page for CD-ROM is accessible on the main index page of the web version.

Recommended citation for the web-based version of this publication: Aiken, S.G., Dallwitz, M.J., Consaul, L.L., McJannet, C.L., Boles, R.L., Argus, G.W., Gillett, J.M., Scott, P.J., Elven, R., LeBlanc, M.C., Gillespie, L.J., Brysting, A.K., Solstad, H., and Harris, J.G. 2007. Flora of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago: Descriptions, Illustrations, Identification, and Information Retrieval. NRC Research Press, National Research Council of Canada, Ottawa. http://nature.ca/aaflora/data, accessed on DATE.

Recommended citation for the CD-ROM version of this publication: Aiken, S.G., Dallwitz, M.J., Consaul, L.L., McJannet, C.L., Boles, R.L., Argus, G.W., Gillett, J.M., Scott, P.J., Elven, R., LeBlanc, M.C., Gillespie, L.J., Brysting, A.K., Solstad, H., and Harris, J.G. 2007. Flora of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago: Descriptions, Illustrations, Identification, and Information Retrieval. [CD-ROM] NRC Research Press, National Research Council of Canada, Ottawa.

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