Draba cinerea var. cinerea M.F. Adams
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Family: Brassicaceae
Genus: Draba
Species Synonyms: none
Common Names: ashy whitlow-grass
grayleaf whitlowgrass
Canada: Yukon Territory - Northwest Territories - Labrador, south to British Columbia - northern Saskatchewan - northern Ontario - Ungava
Saskatchewan: northern Saskatchewan; Lake Athabasca to Hasbala Lake
Ecoregion: Tazin Lake Upland, Selwyn Lake Upland
Saskatchewan: dry, granitic cliffs and outcrops
Provincial Status According
to Harms (2003):
Nature Conservancy Status:
G5 S1
Saskatchewan Species at
Risk Status:
Ashy whitlow-grass is endangered in Saskatchewan because it is extremely rare and most local populations are small. This species is likely frequently overlooked, especially when not flowering.
Height: 10 – 25 cm
Roots: taproot
Stems: base woody, simple to woody; stems perennial, erect or ascending, simple to branched, greenish to purplish, hairs star-shaped
Leaves: basal and on the stem; basal leaves several in a loose tuft, 0.5 – 1 cm long, narrowly spoon-shaped, ashy-gray, with a felt-like covering of star-shaped hairs, margin entire; stem leaves usually less than 5, alternate, sessile, lance-shaped to ovate, with a felt-like covering of star-shaped hairs, margin entire
Inflorescence: unbranched, elongating and becoming lax in fruit; 5 – 16 flowered
Flowers: 6 – 10 mm across; sepals four; petals four, cross-shaped, white
Fruits: pod 7 – 10 mm long, 1 – 3 mm wide, broadly lance-shaped, not twisted, greenish-gray, with a felt-like covering of star-shaped hairs; stalks spreading-ascending, slightly longer to about equal to pod; seeds at most 36 in two rows, reddish brown
1 Flowers yellow; stems very leafy or stalks 2 – 4 times as long as pod
1 Flowers white; stems with less than 10 leaves and stalks various
2 Stem leaves usually more than 10; stalks shorter than pod
D. aurea
2 Stem leaves 1 – 5; stalks 2 – 4 times as long as pod
D. nemorosa
3 Stem leaves all or mostly opposite; inflorescence umbrella-like in fruit
D. reptans
3 Stem leaves alternate; inflorescence elongate in fruit
4 Woody stem base absent; stem leaves on lower 1/3 of plant; stalks 2 – 4 times as long as pod
D. nemorosa
4 Woody stem base present; stem leaves usually at least 1/2 way up stem; stalks rarely 2 times as long as pod
5 Stem leaves less than 5; fruiting stalks spreading-ascending; mature siliques broadly lance-shaped, not twisted, with thick coat of minute hairs; seeds at most 36
D. cinerea var. cinerea
5 Stem leaves usually 5 – 8; fruiting stalks strongly ascending; mature siliques narrowly lance-shaped, twisted, with star-shaped hairs; seeds at most 20 – 48
D. breweri var. cana