A view down a vertical cliff at a cluster of smooth-leaf douglasia as seen along the trail to the upper falls on McCord Creek in the Columbia River Gorge..........April 20, 2009.
Smooth-leaf Douglasia is a very attractive, low-growing wildflower with lax stems which often forms mats or rounded mounds on cliff faces. The leaves are oblong-oblanceolate or oblanceolate, measuring from 5-20 mm long and 2-5 mm wide. The margins range from entire to few-toothed with glabrous to ciliolate surfaces.
The inflorescence consists of 2-10 closely-flowered umbels. The flower stems range from 2-15 mm long. The involucres consist of 4-8 ovate or ovate-lanceolate bracts, each from 3-8 mm long. The calyx is 6-7 mm long and consists 5 subequal, lanceolate lobes. The corolla consists of a tube from 6-7 mm long with 5 oblong-obovate lobes from 4-5 mm long. The flowers are a deep pinkish-rose in color, fading to lavender.
Smooth-leaf douglasia may be found on rocky or talus slopes at low elevation (in the Columbia River Gorge and along the Pacific Coast) to subalpine and alpine habitats. In the Columbia River Gorge, it is often found on shear, basalt cliffs as colorful hanging gardens that often must be viewed with binoculars.
Smooth-leaf douglasia may be found west of the Cascade crest from Snohomish County in Washington south to Mt. Rainier, in the Olympic Mts. and Coast Range of southwestern Washington and northwestern Oregon, and the Columbia River Gorge.
In the Columbia River Gorge, it may be found between the elevations of 100'-3400' from near Crown Point and Mitchell Point.