Saponaria officinalis (Bouncing-Bet) - photos and description


Stem leaf in above photo. 

General: Stout perennials with glabrous stems, rhizomatous. Growth habit is single-stemmed to branching mid-stem.

Flowers: Flowers showy and fragrant in terminal cymes and cymes from upper leaf axils. Flower colour white to pinkish-white. We measured a flower at 2.5 cm diameter. Calyx is cylindric (not inflated as in many other plants in the Pink family).

Leaves: The leaves are opposite, sessile, 3-nerved, lanceolate, ciliate with tiny hairs. The leaf highlighted in the above photo was 11.5 cm long by 4 cm wide.

Height: Height listed in Flora of Alberta to 80 cm, we measured plants to 93 cm tall.

Habitat: Roadsides and waste ground.

Abundance: Uncommon.

Origin: Introduced, an escaped ornamental.

When and where photographed: Photos taken on August 7th, roadside in boreal forest, Hudson Bay district about 475 km northeast of our home in Regina, SK.