[The Burnets of the Columbia River Gorge of Oregon and Washington]

Garden Burnet, Small Burnet

Poterium sanguisorba var. polygamum

Synonyms: Sanguisorba minor, Sanguisorba minor ssp. muricata

Inflorescence of Small Burnet, Garden Burnet: Poterium sanguisorba var. polygamum (Synonyms: Sanguisorba minor, Sanguisorba minor ssp. muricata)

Inflorescence of Sanguisorba minor from the garden of the webmaster in Gresham, OR...........mid July 2001.

Small Burnet, Garden Burnet: Poterium sanguisorba var. polygamum (Synonyms: Sanguisorba minor, Sanguisorba minor ssp. muricata) The photo at right illustrates a scan of small burnet as found from the garden of the webmaster in Gresham, OR...........mid July 2001. Note the ovate leaflets with toothed margins. The inflorescence is at the upper right.
Characteristics:

Small burnet is a small perennial occasionally used as a garden plant. The leaves are found on both the stems as well as part of a basal rosette. The stems range from simple to branched above and are erect or ascending. They range from 20-60 cm tall and each stem has several scarcely reduced leaves. Individual leaves are pinnately compound with 9-17 oval to ovate-oblong leaflets. Each leaflet is 1-2 cm long with coarse teeth along the leaf margin.

The inflorescence (as seen above) is globose or ovoid, ranging from 8-20 mm long and up to 10 mm thick. The tiny flowers are rose colored and have approximately 12 stamens.


Habitat:

Small burnet may be found in gardens and other disturbed areas around yards and gardens. It is also found in waste areas.


Range:

Small burnet is a native of Europe which has been introduced to North America. It is more common in the eastern United States where it has escaped cultivation. Near the west coast, small burnet may be found on Lummi Island (northwest of Bellingham, WA) and near Bingen, WA in the Columbia River Gorge.

In the Columbia River Gorge it may be found between the elevations of 100'-400' between Beacon Rock and Bingen, WA.


Inflorescence of Small Burnet, Garden Burnet: Poterium sanguisorba var. polygamum (Synonyms: Sanguisorba minor, Sanguisorba minor ssp. muricata) - Leaf of Small Burnet, Garden Burnet: Poterium sanguisorba var. polygamum (Synonyms: Sanguisorba minor, Sanguisorba minor ssp. muricata)

Close-up images of the inflorescence and basal leaf of small burnet as seen along an abandoned road through oak forest to the west of Canyon Creek, Klickitat Wildlife Area.........May 3, 2015.

Paul Slichter