[Geraniums East of the Cascade Mts. of Oregon and Washington]

Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium

Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum

Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum

Flower of Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum)

The photo above shows a close-up of the flower of sticky geranium. Photographed at Jackman Park Campground, Steens Mt..........August 3, 1995.


Flower of Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum)The photo at right shows another close-up of the flower of sticky geranium from Jackman Park C.G., Steens Mt............Aug 3, 1995.
Characteristics:

Also known as sticky crane's-bill, sticky geranium is an attractive hardy perennial wildflower suitable for the wild garden. Plants are short-rhizomatous from a taproot with numerous erect to spreading stems from 40-90 cm high. The herbage of the lower stems ranges from glabrous (var. incisum) to covered with numerous spreading hairs throughout or especially covered throughout with gland-tipped hairs in var. viscosissimum. The leaves are simple with palmate venation, the blade deeply incised into 5-7 large divisions (See photos.). The blades are 6-12 cm wide with the petioles of the lower leaves from 10-30 long.

The inflorescence consists of 2 to several flowers in an open cyme. The peduncles and pedicels are densely pubescent or covered with gland-tipped hairs. The pedicels range from 1.5-4 cm long while each of the sepals is lanceolate to ovate in shape and 8-10 mm long. The petals are obovate with rounded to squared-off tips. They are pink, lavender or violet with purple or dark reddish veins and measure from 14-22 mm long. The inner surface of the petals are covered with long, soft, straight hairs over the lower one-quarter with a few scattered hairs found up to mid petal. The mature stylar column is 28-41 mm long. The stylar column consists of the elongated style with the closely appressed stamens which only diverge from the axis of the style at the anthers. The tip of the style is divided into 5 short, spreading stigma lobes.

The similar Richardson's geranium (G. richardsonii) has petals that are white or pinkish with purple veins. They are densely covered with long, soft, straight hairs over the lower half of the petal. This geranium is more often found in moist, shady places along streams and seeps while sticky geranium is often found nearby, but in drier, more upland habitats.


Varieties of Sticky Geranium Found in the Pacific Northwest:

var. incisum: Herbage of the petioles and lower stems and leaves consists of nonglandular hairs. Found well into north-central Oregon, but more representative of plants from the southern half of the range of sticky geranium.

var. viscosissimum: Herbage of all stems, petioles and leaves consists of gland-tipped hairs. Found southward to northern California and northern Nevada. More representative of plants from the northern portion of the range of sticky geranium.


Habitat:

Sticky geranium may be found growing in meadows and open woodlands from the lowlands to moderate elevations in the mountains.


Range:

Sticky geranium may be found from British Columbia south to the east of the Cascade Mts. to northern California and east to Saskatchewan and south through western South Dakota, Colorado, Utah and Nevada.

Variety viscosissimum is found from British Columbia south to northern California and east to Saskatchewan and south to northern Nevada and northern Wyoming.


Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum) - Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum) - Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum)

Sticky geranium as seen along Oregon Highway 203 across from the campground at Catherine Creek State Park, Union County, OR......June 13, 2018. Note the numerous gland-tipped hairs on the stems, pedicels and sepals.

Leaf of Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum) - Leaves of Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum)

The photo at left shows a palmately-lobed basal leaf of sticky geranium. Photographed north of Davenport, WA.........June 23, 2006. The photo at right shows the leaves of sticky geranium as seen along the Stubblefield Trail about one mile northwest of Stubblefield Lake, Turnbull National Wildlife Refuge......May 8, 2019.

Flower of Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum)

The photo above shows a close-up of the flower of sticky geranium as seen along the road to Blue Sky, Hart Mt. National Antelope Refuge, south-central Oregon.........June 29, 1997. Note the stylar column with the closely appressed stamens which diverge from the axis of the style near the tip of the style.

Leaf of Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum) - Leaf of Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum)

The photos above show the palmately veined leaves of sticky geranium. The photo at right shows a lower leaf, while that at right shows a leaf from mid stem. The photo at left was photographed along US 97 at Satus Pass in south-central Washington on June 22, 1997. The photo at right was photographed at the intersections of forest roads 41 & 43 in the Ochoco National Forest of central Oregon on July 13, 2003.

Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum) - Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum) - Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum)

Sticky geranium observed along the Stubblefield Trail about one mile northwest of Stubblefield Lake, Turnbull National Wildlife Refuge......July 4, 2018.

Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum)

The photo above shows the elongating fruit of sticky geranium, which helps give it one of its nicknames, crane's-bill. Photographed north of Davenport, WA.........June 23, 2006. Note the numerous gland-tipped hairs over all surfaces.

Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum)

The photo above shows a nicely proportioned sticky geranium as seen along the Umatilla Rim Trail #3080 near Tollgate in the Umatilla N.F........June 24, 2007.

Flower of Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum) - Sideview of the petals and sepals of Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum) - Flower of Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum)

Maturing fruits of - Leaf of Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum) - Leaf of Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum)

Close-ups of the flowers and leaves of sticky purple geranium as seen at Fish Lake Campground, Steens Mountain Recreation Lands in southeastern Oregon.........September 3, 2011. Note the spreading, gland-tipped hairs on the pedicels which help identify this as variety viscosissimum. Var. incisum is non-glandular.

Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum)

A large cluster of sticky geranium blooming in wet meadows at the head of a southern branch of Little Cottonwood Creek just west of a pass that Arizona Creek Road crosses in the Pueblo Mountains of southeastern Oregon.........June 1, 2012.

Sticky Geranium, Sticky Purple Geranium: Geranium viscosissimum var. viscosissimum (Synonym: Geranium attenuilobum)

Sticky geranium blooming at Fields Springs State Park, Asotin County, Washington.........June 11, 2013.

Paul Slichter