Rare Plant Profile – Rose Mandarin, Streptopus lanceolatus (Aiton) Reveal
Rose mandarin (Streptopus lanceolatus (Aiton) Reveal), also known as rosy twisted-stalk , is a perennial herb in the Liliaceae Family. It has simple or occasionally branched, erect stems between 10-80 cm tall . It is distinguished from a similar, more common species, S. amplexifolius, by a sparse fringe of hairs at each node [2,3]. Its leaf blades are egg-shaped, with pointed tips, 3-10 cm long, 1-5 cm wide, stalkless, and either smooth-edged or fringed with several-celled hairs . Bell-shaped, stalked flowers from leaf axils are 6-10 cm long, with 6 tepals slightly curving outward from their tip. As the common name implies, flowers are rose-coloured with white tips, or white to greenish yellow, with reddish purple spots or streaks . Flowers mature into red berries, 5-9 mm diameter, each containing several seeds . Rose mandarin grows in moist, coniferous and deciduous woods [2,7].
While rose mandarin’s conservation status rank is Secure in BC, Ontario, New Brunswick, Canada and globally, it is ranked as S1, or Critically Imperiled in Alberta . This is likely due to this species being at the periphery of its range in Alberta and may be threatened by changes in forested land cover and land use, forest habitat fragmentation, and forest management practices [1,9].
To learn more about rare plants of Alberta, visit the links provided in the footnotes, and stay tuned for the ANPC’s second edition of the Rare Vascular Plants of Alberta book. This is one of many conservation initiatives that ANPC is working on. Please remember to renew your 2021 membership, as ANPC relies on membership dues and donations to support this and other conservation and education initiatives.
|Streptopus lanceolatus with flowers|
|Habitat for Streptopus lanceolatus|
*All photos by L. Kershaw
 Kershaw, L.; Gould, J.; Johnson, D.; Lancaster, J. 2001. Rare vascular plants of Alberta. Univ. Alberta Press, Edmonton, Alberta and Nat. Resour. Can., Can. For. Serv., North. For. Cent., Edmonton, Alberta
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