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

Salix uva-ursi Pursh

English: Bearberry willow,

French: Saule raisin-d'ours,

Inuktitut: Uqaujaq (Nunavik).

Salicaceae, Willow family.

Published in Fl. Amer. Sept. 2: 610. 1814.

Synonymy. Salix arbuscula L. var. labradorica (Andersson) Andersson, Proc. Am. Acad. Arts Sci. 4: 71. 1858.

Salix cutleri Tuck. Am. J. Sci. 14: 36. 1843.

Salix cutleri β (var.) labradorica (Andersson) Andersson, in DC. Prodr. 16(2): 292. 1868.

Salix ivigtutiana Lundstr. Öfvers. Vet. Akad. Förh. 41: 61, 88. 1884.

Salix myrsinites L. var. parvifolia Andersson, in Blytt, Norges Flora 2: 450. 1861.

Vegetative morphology. Plants 1–5 cm high; shrubs; dwarf shrubs; forming colonies by layering. Aerial stems prostrate (trailing). Branches red-brown, or grey-brown, or yellow-brown; not glaucous; glabrous. Branchlets yellow-green, or yellow-brown; not glaucous; glabrous, or hairy, or glabrescent; puberulent. Branchlet hairs sparse; appressed, or spreading (geniculate). Buds arctica-type. Leaves present; distributed along the stems; alternate; dying annually and non-persistent, or marcescent. Stipules present; on first leaves absent, or rudimentary, or foliaceous; on leaves formed later in the season foliaceous; persisting for 2 or more years, or deciduous in autumn; green; apex acute. Petioles 2–6.5 mm long; shallowly concave in cross section, or deeply concave in cross section; glabrous. Juvenile leaves yellowish green; glabrous, or hairy; abaxial surfaces pilose, or puberulent; abaxial hairs sparse; abaxial hairs white. Leaf blade bases cuneate, or obtuse (slightly decurrent). Leaves not grass-like. Blades 4–23 mm long, length-width ratio 1.7–3.6, 3.5–10 mm wide, obovate (to broadly obovate) or oblanceolate or elliptic. Blade adaxial surface shiny or highly glossy, glabrous or hairy or glabrescent, hairs puberulent or long-silky, hairs sparse, hairs white, or translucent. Blade abaxial surface glaucous, glabrous or glabrescent, hairs sparse. Blade margins flat. Blade margins serrulate or crenate or entire and glandular-dotted (rare), with teeth toward the apex or all around the blade, with teeth per cm 4–10; apices acuminate, or obtuse, or retuse.

Reproductive morphology. Plants dioecious. Inflorescences catkins. Pedicels absent. Catkins flowering as leaves emerge. Male catkins 9–19 mm long; 5–8 mm wide; stout; peduncles 1–6 mm long; borne on a flowering branchlet; flowering branchlets 0.5–9 mm long. Female catkins 11–47 mm long; 6–10 mm wide; slender, or stout, or sub-globose; peduncles 1.5–10 mm long; borne on a flowering branchlet; flowering branchlets 2–10 mm long. Floral bracts brown, or black, or tawny, or light rose, or bicolour; 1.1–1.8 mm long; hairy all over, or glabrous; hairs sparse; hairs straight, or wavy; apices rounded, or acute; apices entire. Flowers unisexual. Sepals absent. Petals absent. Stamens 1 (rarely 2); stamen filaments glabrous. Anthers purple becoming yellow, or reddish, becoming yellow; ellipsoid, or short-cylindrical; 0.4–0.7 mm long. Male flowers abaxial nectaries absent. Male flowers adaxial nectaries narrowly oblong, or oblong; 0.4–0.9 mm long. Female flowers abaxial nectaries absent. Female flowers adaxial nectaries narrowly oblong, or oblong; 0.5–0.8 mm long; shorter than stipes, or longer than stipes. Ovary carpels 2. Stipes 0.32–1.6 mm long. Ovaries ovate, or pear-shaped; gradually tapering to style; glabrous. Styles 0.35–1 mm long. Stigma lobes 0.1–0.23–0.4 mm long. Ovules per ovary 4–9. Fruit a capsule; 3–5 mm long; glabrous.

Chromosome information. 2n = 38.

2n (2x) = 38. Jørgensen et al. (1958, Greenland); Löve and Löve (1966b, Mt. Washington, USA).

Ploidy levels recorded 2x.

Ecology and habitat. A dwarf shrub forming mats on exposed, dry or moist calcareous and granitic rocks, boulders, gravel, and sand on beaches, outcrops, and snowbeds.

North American distribution. Nunavut Islands, northern Quebec, Labrador. Arctic islands: Baffin.

Northern hemisphere distribution. North American (American Atlantic). Labrador – Hudson Bay, West Greenland.

General notes. Salix uva-ursi is a dwarf shrub that forms large mats with prostrate branches. Its leaves are entire and elliptic, and ovaries are glabrous.

Hybrids

S. herbacea × S. uva-ursi (Salix ×peasei Fernald). This hybrid combines characters of the parental species. It is coarser than S. herbacea and has thick, trailing stems. Its leaves are crenate as in S. herbacea, but its longer catkins resemble S. uva-ursi. Polunin (1940) reports it from Chesterfield Inlet; he includes it in the key and illustrates it in his Circumpolar Arctic Flora (Polunin 1959). This hybrid was described based on material from Mt. Washington, New Hampshire.

Illustrations. • Habitat. Mats growing in rocky lichen tundra. Quebec, Clearwater lake. 16 July, 1983. • Habit: old plant. Sprawling plant with exposed woody trunk, growing prostrate on the tundra. Nunavut, Baffin Island, Tarr Inlet. 20 August, 2006. Aiken. No voucher,. • Habit. When the plant is growing over warm rocks the shoots become longer and bear larger leaves. Nunavut, Baffin Island, Iqaluit. August, 1997. Aiken and Cheryl McJannet 97011. CAN. • Habit. Plant turning orange-brown in the fall. Nunavut, Baffin Island, Iqaluit. August, 1997. Aiken and Cheryl McJannet 97045. CAN. Scale bar in cm. • Habit. Mat growing in rocky lichen tundra. Quebec, Clearwater Lake. 16 July, 1983. • Close-up of leaves and overwintering buds. Close-up of leaves and overwintering buds from a previous picture. Nunavut, Baffin Island, Iqaluit. August, 1997. Aiken and Cheryl McJannet 97011. CAN. • Young male catkins. Male plant growing over rock face with numerous catkins that have anthers borne on long filaments. Nunavut, Baffin Island, Soper River Valley. Aiken and Iles 02–059. CAN. • Young male catkins. Male catkins with dark red pre-anthesis anthers and yellow anthers that have shed pollen. Nunavut, Baffin Island, Soper River Valley, Cascade River. 7 July, 2002. Aiken 02–050. CAN. • Close-up of male catkin. Close-up of male catkin showing long red filaments with dense hairs at the base. Nunavut, Baffin Island, Soper River Valley, Cascade River. 7 July, 2002. Aiken 02–050. CAN. • Close-up of female catkin. Female catkin with styles extended and stigmas beginning to separate and become receptive. Aiken and Iles 02–059. CAN. • Female plant. Prostrate mat with short, erect catkins. The ovaries typically are reddish and glabrous. The leaves are small and elliptic. CMN Photo Library S84–5381. Photograph by Donald Gunn. • Close-up of a female catkin. A female catkin with glabrous, reddish ovaries. Nunavut, Baffin Island, Iqaluit. 22 July, 1982. J.M. Gillet 18992. CAN. • Catkins shedding "cotton". Mature catkins in which the fruit are opening to release the "cotton" associated with the seeds. Nunavut, Baffin Island, Soper River Valley. July, 2002. No voucher. • Arctic Island Distribution.


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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