Flora of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago

DELTA Home

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

Primula borealis Duby

Primulaceae, Primrose family.

Published in Mém. Soc. Phys. Nat. Génève 10: 31.1843.

Type: Alaska: Shishmaref, 1816, leg. Chamisso and Eschscholtz, selected by Kelso, Rhodora 93: 80. 1991. Lectotype: LE.

Synonymy. Primula parviflora Duby, in DC, Prodr. 8: 42. 1844.

Vegetative morphology. Plants 5–15 cm high; perennial herbs. Only fibrous roots present. Often whitish. Leaves dying annually and non-persistent. Petioles (10–)20–40 mm long; winged (at the base), or not winged (near the blade); glabrous. Leaf blade bases attenuate. Blades (5–)10–20 mm long, (1.5–)2–5 mm wide, obovate (broadly dilated), flat, appearing single-veined or with inconspicuous veins. Blade adaxial surface glabrous. Blade abaxial surface glabrous. Blade margins entire or dentate (slightly).

Reproductive morphology. Flowering stems without leaves. Inflorescences with flowers in umbels. Flowers per inflorescence (2–)3–7; medium-sized; radially symmetrical (actinomorphic). Sepals conventional; 5; fused; 4–5 mm wide; brown, or purple. Calyx funnel-form; 5-lobed; glabrous. Calyx margins without cilia (but with small stipitate glands). Petals conventional; fused; 5; white (rarely), or yellow (at the throat), or purple (lilac), or blue (in drying); with contrasting markings (colour gradation from yellow centre to lilac petal lobes). Corolla campanulate; 5-lobed. Stamens 5; fused to the corolla. Anthers yellow; short-cylindrical; 1–1.2 mm long. Ovary syncarpous. Ovaries inverse turnip-shaped; glabrous. Styles 1; completely fused; 4–7 mm long. Placentation free central. Ovules per ovary few. Fruit stalked; stalk 13–20 mm long; with calyx persisting; dry; a capsule; oblong; yellowish, or golden brown; 5–7 mm long; 2–3.5 mm wide; glabrous; surface appearing veinless; not distinctly flattened; dehiscent; opening with teeth at the top of the capsule; teeth 5. Seeds numerous; 0.5–0.6 mm long; brown; surfaces smooth.

Chromosome information. 2n = 18 and 36.

2n (2x) = 18. Bruun (1938); Thomas (1951, Alaska); Zhukova (1980, southern Chukotka); Zhukova and Petrovsky (1980, western Chukotka);

2n (4x) = 36. Zhukova (1965b, Wrangel Island; 1966, 1982, northeastern Asia); Johnson and Packer (1968, northwestern Alaska); Zhukova and Tikhonova (1971, 1973, northeastern Asia); Zhukova et al. (1973, northeastern Asia); Kelso (1987, 1991, Alaska).

Ploidy levels recorded 2x and 4x.

North American distribution. Recorded from Mackenzie River Delta, north end of Richards Island, growing on a moist, grassy slope (CAN 91313); and in the same location, growing in meadows subject to flooding (CAN 91314).

Elven (personal communication, 2005) noted that this is also common on terraces of marine clay at Cape Bathurst (O), in eroded patches in sloping banks and around squirrel burrows. This is the easternmost part of the range mapped by Porsild and Cody (1980) and perhaps close enough to the islands to merit inclusion. Alaska, Yukon, continental Northwest Territories.

Northern hemisphere distribution. Amphi-Beringian, or Siberian (eastern). Taimyr – Severnaya Zemlya, Anabar–Olenyok, Kharaulakh, Yana–Kolyma, West Chukotka, Wrangel Island, South Chukotka, East Chukotka, West Alaska, North Alaska – Yukon, Central Canada.

General notes. Specimen label data states the flowers are purple, fading to lavender and faintly fragrant, A.E. Porsild 16843 (CAN 91306).

See the discussion of Kelso (1991a) [Rhodora 93: 67–99] for the possibility that the diploid Siberian plants might belong to another taxon.


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.

.

Contents