Overview

Brief Summary

There is something magical about marsh grass of Parnassus. Maybe because of its beautiful pure white flowers intersected with decorative green veins. Or because it was once so common in the Netherlands but is now so rare. Nowadays, it is legally protected in this country. The name itself is majestic, named after the Greek mountain Parnassus which was dedicated to the god Apollo. It flowers from June through September.
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Distribution

Range Description

Parnassia palustris is a circumboreal species. Its world distribution encompasses North America, northern and central Asia, North Africa and all of Europe, where it is rare in the south.
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National Distribution

Canada

Origin: Unknown/Undetermined

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Unknown/Undetermined

Confidence: Confident

United States

Origin: Unknown/Undetermined

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Unknown/Undetermined

Confidence: Confident

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National Distribution

United States

Origin: Unknown/Undetermined

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Unknown/Undetermined

Confidence: Confident

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National Distribution

Canada

Origin: Unknown/Undetermined

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Unknown/Undetermined

Confidence: Confident

United States

Origin: Unknown/Undetermined

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Unknown/Undetermined

Confidence: Confident

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National Distribution

Canada

Origin: Unknown/Undetermined

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Unknown/Undetermined

Confidence: Confident

United States

Origin: Unknown/Undetermined

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Unknown/Undetermined

Confidence: Confident

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National Distribution

United States

Origin: Unknown/Undetermined

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Unknown/Undetermined

Confidence: Confident

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Global Range: Southwestern Oregon (southern Josephine County (Peck 1961) to California (Klamath Ranges, Inner North Coast Ranges, High Cascade Range, High Sierra Nevada, South Coast Ranges (Hickman 1993). Also reported in Nevada by Kartesz (1995).

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Hebei, Heilongjiang, Jilin, Liaoning, Nei Mongol, Ningxia, Shanxi, N Xinjiang [Japan, Kazakhstan, Korea, Mongolia, Russia; Europe, North America].
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Distribution: Fairly common in the temperate and alpine regions of Europe, N. Asia and N. America, grows mostly in moist and boggy places in grass.
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Physical Description

Morphology

Description

Plants 11-40 cm tall. Radical leaves broadly cordate, 1-2 cm long, 0.6-l.8 cm broad, somewhat glaucous, cauline leaf situated below the middle of the scape. Scape angular. Flowers 1.5-2 cm in diameter. Calyx tube c.1 mm long, lobes 4-5 mm long, c.2-2.5 mm broad, elliptic, acute, brown spotted. Petals 0.7-1 cm long, 5-7 mm broad, oblong-ovate, obtuse, usually 9 nerved, nerves mostly parallel and convergent at the top; staminodes spathulate, ending in 9-17 lobes tipped with pseudo-nectaries. Capsule globose, c.1 cm long; seeds minute, somewhat cylindrical, testa loose, reticulate.
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Description

Stems 2-4(-7), 12-20(-30) cm, usually with 1 leaf near middle. Basal leaves 3 to numerous; petiole 3-6(-8) cm; leaf blade abaxially greenish, often purple punctate, adaxially deep green, ovate or long ovate, occasionally triangular-ovate, 1.5-3 × 1-2.5 cm, base subcordate, apex rounded-obtuse or acuminate, often apiculate. Cauline leaf sessile, semiamplexicaul, similar to basal leaves, base often with several rusty brown appendages. Flower 2.2-3(-3.5) cm in diam.; hypanthium inconspicuous. Sepals densely purple-brown punctate, elliptic or oblong, 5-8 × 3-5 mm, margin entire, apex obtuse. Petals white, often purple punctate, broadly ovate or obovate, 1-1.5(-1.8) × 0.7-1(-13) cm, base with a short claw, margin entire or occasionally inconspicuously erose, apex rounded-obtuse or shortly acuminate. Anthers ellipsoid, ca. 3 mm; filaments 2.2-7 mm; staminodes to 1 cm, divided into (7-)9-21 filiform rays with globose glands at apex. Ovary superior, ovoid; style very short; stigma 4-lobed. Capsule ovoid. Seeds brown, glossy, oblong. Fl. Jul-Sep, fr. Oct. 2n = 18, (27), 36.
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Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
It is a perennial herbaceous plant (Hemicryptophyte) that inhabits swamps, mires, fens, peatlands, dune-slacks and short grassland (Preston et al. 2002, Castroviejo et al. 1997). Flowering occurs in summer and autumn (July-October).

Systems
  • Terrestrial
  • Freshwater
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Comments: Sphagnum bogs (Peck 1961) and wet banks and meadows less than 4000 meters (Hickman 1993).

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Moist grassy slopes, streamsides, shaded moist places in valleys, grassy fields; 1200-2200 m.
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Associations

In Great Britain and/or Ireland:
Foodplant / parasite
aecium of Puccinia uliginosa parasitises live Parnassia palustris

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Life History and Behavior

Cyclicity

Flower/Fruit

Fl. Per.: June-August.
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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Barcode data: Parnassia palustris

The following is a representative barcode sequence, the centroid of all available sequences for this species.


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Statistics of barcoding coverage: Parnassia palustris

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 9
Specimens with Barcodes: 37
Species With Barcodes: 1
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Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
LC
Least Concern

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2014

Assessor/s
Lansdown, R.V.

Reviewer/s
Smith, K.

Contributor/s
Stanley, C., Flanagan, D., Rhazi, M., Grillas, P., Bilz, M. & Rhazi, L.

Justification
This species is classed as Least Concern as it is widespread with stable populations in parts of its range and therefore the risk of the species going extinct in Europe is quite low. However, it is of concern that the species is classed as threatened on various national red lists and local conservation measures are required.
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National NatureServe Conservation Status

Canada

Rounded National Status Rank: NNR - Unranked

United States

Rounded National Status Rank: NNR - Unranked

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NatureServe Conservation Status

Rounded Global Status Rank: T4 - Apparently Secure

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National NatureServe Conservation Status

United States

Rounded National Status Rank: NNR - Unranked

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NatureServe Conservation Status

Rounded Global Status Rank: TNR - Not Yet Ranked

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National NatureServe Conservation Status

Canada

Rounded National Status Rank: NNR - Unranked

United States

Rounded National Status Rank: NNR - Unranked

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NatureServe Conservation Status

Rounded Global Status Rank: T4 - Apparently Secure

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National NatureServe Conservation Status

Canada

Rounded National Status Rank: NNR - Unranked

United States

Rounded National Status Rank: NNR - Unranked

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NatureServe Conservation Status

Rounded Global Status Rank: G5 - Secure

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National NatureServe Conservation Status

United States

Rounded National Status Rank: NNR - Unranked

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NatureServe Conservation Status

Rounded Global Status Rank: G3 - Vulnerable

Reasons: Widespread distribution throughout California mountain ranges and into Josephine County, Oregon, and Nevada. Occurs in sphagnum bogs and open, wet habitats. Abundance is unknown.

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Population

Population

This species is widespread and abundant throughout its known range. There is no detailed information available on population size.


Population Trend
Decreasing
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Threats

Major Threats
The drainage of wetlands for agricultural purposes is the main threat for this species.
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Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
Parnassia palustris is included on the following national red lists:
  • Critically Endangered in Luxembourg (Colling 2005)
  • Endangered in Belgium (Van Landuyt et al. 2006) and the Czech Republic (Holub and Procházka 2000)
  • Vulnerable in Hungary (Király 2007), Germany (category 3 - Ludwig and Schnittler 1996) and the Netherlands (Meijden 2000)
  • Least Concern in Denmark (NERI 2007), Norway (Artsdatabanken 2010), Switzerland (Moser et al. 2002) and the United Kingdom (Cheffings and Farrell 2005)
This species is protected in France: departmental (Moselle, Meuse, Meurthe-et-Moselle, Landes, Gironde) and regional protection (Alsace, Nord-Pas-de-Calais, Basse-Normandie, Centre, Picardie, Pays-de-la-Loire) (Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle 2003-2012).
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Wikipedia

Parnassia palustris

Parnassia palustris, commonly called Marsh Grass-of-Parnassus, Northern Grass-of-Parnassus, and Bog-star, is a species of the genus Parnassia.[1]

It is the county flower of Cumbria and Sutherland in the United Kingdom, and appears on the county arms of the former county. The name comes from ancient Greece: evidently the cattle on Mount Parnassus appreciated the plant; hence it was an "honorary grass".[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Plants Profile — Parnassia palustris L., marsh grass of Parnassus". U.S. Department of Agriculture — Natural Resources Conservation Service. Retrieved 3 February 2010. 
  2. ^ "Grass-of-Parnassus". Plantlife. Retrieved 10 December 2010. 
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Parnassia californica

Parnassia californica is a species of flowering plant in the family Celastraceae known by the common name California grass of Parnassus. It is native to the mountains of Oregon, California, and Nevada, where it grows in moist areas such as meadows and streambanks.

It is a perennial herb producing an erect flowering stem from a patch of basal leaves. The leaf is up to 14 centimeters long with an oval or spoon-shaped blade at the end of a long petiole. The inflorescence may be nearly half a meter tall and consists of a mostly naked peduncle with one bract midway up.

The single flower has five small sepals behind five veined white petals each 1 to 2 centimeters long. At the center of the flower are five stamens and five staminodes with fringes of many hairlike, sphere-tipped lobes.

P. californica flower detail
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Names and Taxonomy

Taxonomy

Comments: This is the record for Parnassia palustris var. tenuis in the broad sense, including P. multiseta.

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Comments: As treated in Kartesz (1999), Parnassia palustris var. palustris only occurs in Alaska in the Synthesis area.

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Comments: As treated in Kartesz (1999), Parnassia palustris var. montanensis includes southwestern U.S. material that had apparently been included in Parnassia parviflora in Kartesz (1994).

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Comments: This broad concept includes Parnassia multiseta and Parnassia parviflora which were recognized as distinct species in Kartesz (1994).

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