Page authors: Don Knoke, David Giblin
Lithospermum ruderale

Distribution: Occurring east of the Cascades crest in Washington; southern British Columbia to California, east to the Sasketchewan and the Rocky Mountains.

Habitat: Sagebrush desert to ponderosa pine forest openings, from low to middle elevations in the mountains.

Flowers: April-June

Origin: Native

Growth Duration: Perennial

Conservation Status: Not of concern

Pollination: Bees, flies


Appressed-hairy perennial from a coarse, woody taproot, the several clustered stems 2-6 dm. tall.


Leaves all cauline, the lowermost reduced, the others numerous, sessile, lanceolate to linear, 3-10 cm. long and 2-10 mm. wide.


Flowers in small, leafy-bracteate clusters in the axils of the short, upper branches; calyx deeply cleft; corolla pale yellow, often tinged with green, 8-13 mm. long, the 5 lobes entire, the limb 7-13 mm. wide; style short; nutlets basally attached.


Nutlets smooth, shining, gray, 3.5-6 mm. long, with a ventral keel, often only 1 or 2 of the 4 developed.

Accepted Name:
Lithospermum ruderale Douglas ex Lehm.
Publication: Nov. Stirp. Pug. 2: 28. 1830.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
Lithospermum lanceolatum Rydb., Invalid name
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Lithospermum ruderale in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database

WA Flora Checklist: Lithospermum ruderale checklist entry

OregonFlora: Lithospermum ruderale information

E-Flora BC: Lithospermum ruderale atlas page

CalPhotos: Lithospermum ruderale photos

77 photographs:
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