Alpine springbeauty is an attractive perennial of rocky, alpine areas with a fleshy, elongated taproot. The basal leaves are numerous, forming flattened to rounded rosettes. Individual leaves are fleshy, broadly spatulate in shape with a narrow to broad petiole that is 1-3 times longer than the blade. The basal leaves are 5-25 mm wide. The stems are numerous, containing 2 nearly opposite linear to oblanceolate leaves up to 5 mm wide near midstem.
The flowers are in leafy bracteate clusters at the end of the stems, the bracts spatulate to linear in shape. The 2 sepals are either green and succulent with obtuse tips, measuring up to 4-6 mm long, or they are reddish, thinner with acute tips, the length from 6-9 mm long. The 5 petals are whte, rose or deep pink, measuring 7-15 mm long.
Alpine springbeauty may be found in talus or on gravel slopes above timberline in the mountains.
Alpine springbeauty may be found from the Wenatchee Mts. of central Washington south to the Blue and Wallowa Mts. of northeastern Oregon and eastward through the mountains to the Rocky Mts of southern Alberta south through Montana, Colorado, Utah, and New Mexico.
Alpine springbeauty beginning to bloom amongst talus rocks near the summit of the Strawbery Basin Trail #375 (at a point where the snow hangs late into the season several hundred yards south of the junction with the Onion Creek Trail #368), Strawberry Mountain Wilderness.........July 18, 2013.
Alpine springbeauty (variety megarhiza) as seen in talus atop Arsenic Peak, at the eastern edge of the Bob Marshall Wilderness in Montana.......July 27, 1999.