Ericaceae
Kalmia microphylla

Western Bog Laurel

Stems stand upright or lie prostrate on ground. Leaves leathery, evergreen, 1–2 in. long, usually rolled under on edges; upper surface dark glossy green; lower surface white with dense fine hairs. Pink flowers in loose cluster atop stem. Five petals are partially fused into an open cup, each petal with small pocket that holds tip of the stamens under tension. When touched by an insect, stamen pops out and covers insect with pollen. Grows in peat soils, bogs, wet meadows, rock crevices, at low to high elevations. Lower-elevation plants tend to be taller with larger leaves.

  • Rarity: Locally Common
  • Flowering Time: All Summer
  • Life Cycle: Perennial
  • Height: 6--18 inches
  • Habitat: Meadow, West-Side Forest, East-Side Forest, Subalpine, Alpine, Bog/Fen/Wetland
  • Found In: Crater Lake NP, Olympic NP, Mt. Rainier NP, N Cascades NP, Wallowas, West Gorge
  • Native: Yes