Alpine Azalea

Botanical Name :Loiseleuria  procumbens
Family: Ericaceae (er-ek-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Loiseleuria (loy-sel-LEW-ree-uh) (Info)
Species: procumbens (pro-KUM-benz) (Info)
Synonym:Kalmia procumbens,Loiseleuria procumbens (L.) Desv. AZPR Azalea procumbens L. , CHPR8 Chamaecistus procumbens (L.) Kuntze , KAPR Kalmia procumbens (L.) Gift, Kron & P.F. Stevens ex Galasso, Banfi & F. Conti.

Kingdom :  Plantae – Plants
Subkingdom: Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
Superdivision: Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Division: Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
Class : Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Subclass : Dilleniidae
Order: Ericales
Species: Loiseleuria procumbens (L.) Desv. – alpine azalea

Habitat : Alpines and Rock Gardens Shrubs.Northern hemisphere distribution: circumpolar; Greenland, Canada, United States, Eurasia. Alaska, Yukon, Continental Northwest Territories, Nunavut Islands, Continental Nunavut, Northern Québec. Low arctic, or alpine. Range in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago limited. Arctic Islands: Baffin. Occasional to common in dry stony heath on acid; dry bouldery slopes in Precambium bedrock and till; Precambium rock: growing in dry gravel patches on rocky slopes with Arctostaphylos (CAN 541759).

Substrates: tundra, slopes, dry meadows; dry; acidic; rocks, gravel, till; with low organic content.

Description: The alpine azalea is a matted or trailing evergreen Perennial shrub with bell shaped flowers that are white or pink.Whole plant hairless.  Calyx and young stems red.It blooms during Late Spring/Early Summer.It’s Foliage is Evergreen, Smooth-Textured, Shiny/Glossy-Textured, Good Fall Color. It often forms a ground mat on well drained rocky sites in arctic and alpine tundra. It ranges throughout Alaska except for on the northern coastal plain.
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Dwarf shrubs, or low shrubs; 5–10 cm high; semi-prostrate, much branched, with small leathery leaves. Aerial stems prostrate; glabrous (sometimes with small trapped sand or soil particles that should not be mistaken for glands). Leaves distributed along the stems; alternate; evergreen and marcescent. Stipules absent. Petioles present; 1–2.5 mm long (often flattened against the stem and easily overlooked); glabrous (abaxial surface), or hairy (adaxial surface); pubescent (if applicable). Petioles hairs appressed, or spreading (conspicuous as tufts in the axils of new leaves); curved. Leaf blade bases truncate, or rounded. Blades 4–8 mm long; 1–2.5 mm wide. Blades length-width ratio 3, or 4. Blades leathery; elliptic; involute; veins pinnate (with mid-vein impressed into the adaxial surface), or appearing single-veined. Blades adaxial surface without sessile glands; glabrous (with a thick epidermis). Blades abaxial surface hairy. Blades abaxial surface hairs very dense. Blades abaxial surface tomentose. Blades abaxial surface hairs white, or translucent hairs; curved; appressed, or spreading. Blade margins entire. Leaf apices rounded.


Other details
:: This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds, Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Healing Qualities – helps us achieve unconditional self-acceptance through the release of  self-doubt; opens our hearts to the spirit of love; teaches us compassion through understanding.

Resources:
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Loiseleuria_procumbens
http://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/go/97806/
http://www.mun.ca/biology/delta/arcticf/_ca/www/erlopr.htm
http://www.nawwal.org/~mrgoff/pictures/picpgs/69813a.html
http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=lopr
http://www.plant-identification.co.uk/skye/ericaceae/loiseleuria-procumbens.htm
http://www.essencesonline.com/Alaskan_flowerkit.htm

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