Flora of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago
English: Blue mountain heath,
French: Phyllodoce bleue,
Ericaceae, Bilberry family.
Published in Man. Brit. Bot. 194. 1843.
Type: Described from northern Sweden, selected by Jonsell, in Cafferty and Jarvis, Taxon 51: 752. 2002. Letotype: LINN 563.3.
Synonymy. Andromeda caerulea L., Sp. Pl. 393. 1753.
Vegetative morphology. Plants (5–)10–15 cm high (to 30 cm tall further south); shrubs; dwarf shrubs. Aerial stems erect and prostrate. Leaves present; distributed along the stems; alternate (lying in the same plane, feather-like); persistent. Petioles present (appressed to the stem at the base); 0.2–0.5 mm long (free portion of the petiole; appressed portion of the petiole 0.8–1 mm long); glabrous. Leaf blade bases cuneate. Blades 6–10 mm long, 1–1.5 mm wide, linear, flat (grooved above and below along the midvein), with inconspicuous veins. Blade adaxial surface with sessile glands (or stalked glands on the margins), glabrous. Blade abaxial surface glabrous and hairy (in the groove), hairs pubescent, hairs very dense, hairs white, hairs curved (through 270°), hairs appressed. Blade margins glandular-dotted or serrulate (from the stalked glands), with teeth all around the blade; apices obtuse, or rounded.
Reproductive morphology. Flowering stems two or more per plant. Flowers solitary, or in inflorescences. Inflorescences fasciculate (a cluster of 2–5 flowers borne towards the tips of the branches); lateral. Pedicels present (10–30 mm long). Flowers per inflorescence 2–5; medium-sized. Sepals conventional; 5; fused; 2.5–3 mm wide; red (wine-coloured); petaloid. Calyx 5-lobed; with sessile glands; hairy. Calyx hairs glandular; brown. Petals conventional; fused; 5; purple (when young), or white, or yellow (after fading); 7–9 mm long. Corolla urceolate; 5-lobed. Stamens 10; free of the corolla. Anthers purple. Anthers opening with a terminal pore. Anthers 1.5–2 mm long (including short terminal extensions with pores). Nectaries present. Ovary inferior; carpels 5; syncarpous. Ovaries inverse turnip-shaped; hairy (with short glandular hairs); pubescent. Styles 1. Placentation axile. Ovules per ovary numerous. Fruit stalked; stalk 25–35 mm long; with calyx persisting; dry; a capsule; conical; black, or brown; 3.5–4 mm long; 3–4 mm wide; surface appearing veinless; dehiscent; splitting to the base into separate segments; teeth 5. Seeds 0.4–0.5 mm long; brown, or yellowish; surfaces reticulate.
Chromosome information. 2n = 24.
2n = 24. Wanscher (1934); Böcher (1938a, Greenland?); Löve and Löve (1956, Iceland; 1966b, northeastern USA; 1982a, central Canada); Jørgensen et al. (1958, Greenland); Sokolovskaya and Strelkova (1960); Sorsa (1963b, Finland); Dalgaard (1988, western Greenland).
Ploidy levels recorded 2x.
Ecology and habitat. Substrates: tundra, slopes, ridges, cliffs; imperfectly drained moist areas, moderately well-drained areas; rocks, gravel, sand; acidic.
North American distribution. Alaska, Nunavut Islands, continental Nunavut, northern Quebec, Labrador. Range in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago limited. Low Arctic, alpine. Arctic islands: Baffin (Porsild and Cody (1980) have a record on Victoria Island for the map of species. No voucher for such a record was found at CAN or DAO in April, 2005. The original map used to produce Porsild and Cody (1980) has a pencil dot that was possibly put there by Porsild but no further legible information. For these reasons we have not included this record).
Northern hemisphere distribution. Circumpolar, or circumboreal (with large gaps). Northern Iceland, Northern Fennoscandian, KaninPechora, Polar Ural Novaya Zemlya, West Chukotka, South Chukotka, East Chukotka, West Alaska, Central Canada, Labrador Hudson Bay, West Greenland, East Greenland.
General notes. This is a well-accepted taxon.
Illustrations. • Habitat. Plants near the marker and others on the adjacent tundra that have purplish flowers. Nunavut, Baffin Island, Ogac Lake. Aiken and LeBlanc 2004. • Plants with buds and remains of capsules. Shrubby plants with linear leaves, purplish flowering buds, and the remains of the previous season's capsules. Nunavut, Baffin Island, Ogac Lake. 9 July, 2004. Aiken and LeBlanc 04–025. CAN 586498. • Habitat. Prostrate shrub plants with purple flowers growing on a south-facing slope near heather with white flowers in the background. Nunavut, Baffin Island, Iqaluit. Aiken 02–014a. CAN. • Close-up of plants. Heath-like plants with small leaves and flowers that have a deep reddish calyx and a fused purplish corolla. Aiken 02–014a. CAN. • Close-up of bud. The free sepals are glabrous at this stage and are fused at the base with the margins overlapping at the top. Aiken and LeBlanc 04–025. CAN 586498. • Close-up of section of flower. Mature sepals covered in fine hairs, petals fused into a campanulate corolla, anthers attached to the receptacle near the base of the ovary. Aiken and LeBlanc 04–025. CAN 586498. • Close-up of capsules. Previous season's capsules that have opened from the top into 5 segments. The sepals are present and spreading at right angles to the capsules. Aiken and LeBlanc 04–017. CAN 586490. • Close-up of flowers. Flowers with free reddish sepals with small glands on the surfaces, and fused bell-like petals that are pale purple at the reflexed tips. Aiken 02–014a. CAN. • Close-up of flowers and fruits. Above, previous season's open capsules. Flowers with free reddish sepals and fused bell-like petals that are pale purple at the reflexed tips. Aiken 02–014a. CAN. • Close-up of plants. Shrubby plants with short-linear leaves. Note previous season's fruiting capsules with five triangular sepals with pointed tips. The central capsule has split from the top down into five-lobed carpel parts. Aiken 02–014a. CAN. • Herbarium specimen. Fruiting capsules, with calyx attached, borne on relatively long pedicels. The leaves are grooved above and below the mid-vein. The blade margins are glandular dotted. Nunavut, Baffin Island, Lake Harbour (Kimmirut). 29–30 August, 1928. M.O. Malte 121014. CAN 88350. • 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..