Page authors: Don Knoke, David Giblin
Vinca minor
lesser periwinkle

Distribution: Occurring west of the Cascades crest in Washington; British Columbia to Oregon, also in Montana, and east across the Great Plains to eastern North America.

Habitat: Disturbed forest understory and edge, roadsides, wastelots, and other disturbed areas at low elevations.

Flowers: March-May

Origin: Introduced from Europe

Growth Duration: Perennial

Conservation Status: Not of concern

Pollination: Bumblebees, bees, flies


Perennial herbs with milky juice, the stems more or less prostrate, rooting, nearly glabrous.


Leaves opposite, ovate to elliptic, 2.5-5 cm. long, short-petiolate, rather leathery.


Flowers solitary in the leaf axils, on long pedicels; calyx divided nearly to the base, the 5 lobes linear; corolla blue-violet, with long, narrow tube and 5 widely-spreading, truncate to rounded lobes, 25-30 mm. broad; tube about 2 cm. long, crested and hairy in the throat; stamens 5, attached below the throat, the filaments short; style elongate, the stigma ovoid, tapering to a truncate apex; ovary superior.


Follicles elongate, forked.

Accepted Name:
Vinca minor L.
Publication: Sp. Pl. 1: 209. 1753.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
(none provided)
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Vinca minor in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Vinca minor checklist entry.

OregonFlora: Vinca minor information.

E-Flora BC: Vinca minor atlas page.

CalPhotos: Vinca minor photos.

USDA Plants: Vinca minor information.

25 photographs:
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