[Pussypaws: The Genus Calyptridium East of the Cascade Mts. of Oregon and Washington]

Pussypaws, Mt. Hood Pussypaws

Calyptridium umbellatum

Synonyms: Calyptridium umbellatum var. caudiciferum, Calyptridium umbellatum var. umbellatum, Cistanthe umbellata, Cistanthe umbellata var. caudicifera, Cistanthe umbellata var. umbellata, Cistanthe umbellatum, Spraguea umbellata, Spraguea umbellata var. caudicifera, Spraguea umbellata var. umbellata

Pussypaws, Mt. Hood Pussypaws: Calyptridium umbellatum (Synonyms: Calyptridium umbellatum var. caudiciferum, Calyptridium umbellatum var. umbellatum, Cistanthe umbellata, Cistanthe umbellata var. caudicifera, Cistanthe umbellata var. umbellata, Cistanthe umbellatum, Spraguea umbellata, Spraguea umbellata var. caudicifera, Spraguea umbellata var. umbellata ) - Pussypaws, Mt. Hood Pussypaws: Calyptridium umbellatum (Synonyms: Calyptridium umbellatum var. caudiciferum, Calyptridium umbellatum var. umbellatum, Cistanthe umbellata, Cistanthe umbellata var. caudicifera, Cistanthe umbellata var. umbellata, Cistanthe umbellatum, Spraguea umbellata, Spraguea umbellata var. caudicifera, Spraguea umbellata var. umbellata )

Pussypaws as seen near the summit of Sugar Loaf Mountain, Wallowa-Whitman National Forest.........August 13, 2018.

Characteristics:

Pussypaws are an attractive low, mat-forming perennial with a basal rosette of leaves and several decumbent to ascending stems from 1-10 cm long. The mat of leaves may be as much as 15 cm wide. The leaves are oblanceolate to obovate-spatulate in shape with wide petioles. The leaves range from 1.5-5 cm long and have glabrous leaf surfaces. The flower stems are leafless, or they may have one or more bractlike leaves.

The flower heads are tight clusters of small flowers, and measure up to 4 cm wide. The sepals are 4-10 mm wide with white to pinkish margins. The petals are roughly the same size as the sepals and oblong in shape. They too are white to pink or red in color. The alpine and subalpine plants are generally perennials, while those of the lower elevation foothills and plains are more nearly annuals.

Pussypaws are found on open subalpine ridges, sandy to gravelly slopes, and in ponderosa pine woods.


Range:

Pussypaws may be found from southern British Columbia south along the crest of the Cascade Mts. south to Baja California and then east to the Rocky Mts. of Montana, Wyoming and Utah.


Pussypaws, Mt. Hood Pussypaws: Calyptridium umbellatum (Synonyms: Calyptridium umbellatum var. caudiciferum, Calyptridium umbellatum var. umbellatum, Cistanthe umbellata, Cistanthe umbellata var. caudicifera, Cistanthe umbellata var. umbellata, Cistanthe umbellatum, Spraguea umbellata, Spraguea umbellata var. caudicifera, Spraguea umbellata var. umbellata ) - Pussypaws, Mt. Hood Pussypaws: Calyptridium umbellatum (Synonyms: Calyptridium umbellatum var. caudiciferum, Calyptridium umbellatum var. umbellatum, Cistanthe umbellata, Cistanthe umbellata var. caudicifera, Cistanthe umbellata var. umbellata, Cistanthe umbellatum, Spraguea umbellata, Spraguea umbellata var. caudicifera, Spraguea umbellata var. umbellata )

Pussypaws observed on heavily burned soils along the Hanan Trail #142, Fremont-Winema National Forest........June 17, 2020. Note the diameter of these plants compared to my 14" long boots.

Pussypaws, Mt. Hood Pussypaws: Calyptridium umbellatum (Synonyms: Calyptridium umbellatum var. caudiciferum, Calyptridium umbellatum var. umbellatum, Cistanthe umbellata, Cistanthe umbellata var. caudicifera, Cistanthe umbellata var. umbellata, Cistanthe umbellatum, Spraguea umbellata, Spraguea umbellata var. caudicifera, Spraguea umbellata var. umbellata ) - Pussypaws, Mt. Hood Pussypaws: Calyptridium umbellatum (Synonyms: Calyptridium umbellatum var. caudiciferum, Calyptridium umbellatum var. umbellatum, Cistanthe umbellata, Cistanthe umbellata var. caudicifera, Cistanthe umbellata var. umbellata, Cistanthe umbellatum, Spraguea umbellata, Spraguea umbellata var. caudicifera, Spraguea umbellata var. umbellata )

Pussypaws, Mt. Hood Pussypaws: Calyptridium umbellatum (Synonyms: Calyptridium umbellatum var. caudiciferum, Calyptridium umbellatum var. umbellatum, Cistanthe umbellata, Cistanthe umbellata var. caudicifera, Cistanthe umbellata var. umbellata, Cistanthe umbellatum, Spraguea umbellata, Spraguea umbellata var. caudicifera, Spraguea umbellata var. umbellata )

Pussypaws as seen on gravelly, late snow melt soils along the South Loop Road about one mile west of the East Rim Viewpoint, Steens Mountain...........September 20, 2015.

Pussypaws, Mt. Hood Pussypaws: Calyptridium umbellatum (Synonyms: Calyptridium umbellatum var. caudiciferum, Calyptridium umbellatum var. umbellatum, Cistanthe umbellata, Cistanthe umbellata var. caudicifera, Cistanthe umbellata var. umbellata, Cistanthe umbellatum, Spraguea umbellata, Spraguea umbellata var. caudicifera, Spraguea umbellata var. umbellata )

Pussypaws as seen at Bird Creek Meadows on the southeastern flank of Mt. Adams...........September 1998.

Paul Slichter