Stellaria alsine
Quellsternmiere Stellaria alsine.jpg
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Order: Caryophyllales
Family: Caryophyllaceae
Genus: Stellaria
S. alsine
Binomial name
Stellaria alsine

Stellaria uliginosa Murray

Stellaria alsine, the bog stitchwort, is a species of herbaceous perennial flowering plant in the carnation family Caryophyllaceae. It grows in bogs and marshes in Europe and parts of North America.


Bog stitchwort is a rhizomatous perennial plant, with smooth, four-angled stems up to 40 cm (16 in) tall.[1] Its leaves are opposite and narrow, up to 13 mm (0.51 in) long, with untoothed margins but a few marginal hairs towards the leaf-base.[1] The flowers are borne in cymes of 1–5, arising from the axils of the higher leaves. Each flower is around 6 mm (0.24 in) in diameter, with 10 stamens, 3 stigmas, five lanceolate–triangular, green-coloured but scarious-margined sepals, and five slightly shorter white petals.[1] The petals are divided into two almost to their base with the two halves angled apart,[1] so that the two halves of each petal lie over parts of adjacent sepals.[2]


Bog stitchwort grows in various types of wetland habitat; in the British Isles, it is especially characteristic of areas poached by cattle.[3] It flowers in spring and early summer.[1]


Bog stitchwort is widespread in central and western Europe, but is rarer in eastern and southern Europe and the northern half of Scandinavia.[4] It is thought to be native to eastern parts of North America, but to be an introduced species in the Pacific Northwest.[1] It has also become naturalised in South America, in Asia, where it has become a weed of rice fields,[5] and on the Kerguelen Islands in the southern Indian Ocean, where it is an aggressive invasive species.[6]


Stellaria alsine was first described by Johann Friedrich Carl Grimm in 1767.[1] The species has also been widely referred to under the junior synonym Stellaria uliginosa.[7]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g Morton, John K. (1993). "Stellaria Linnaeus, Sp. Pl. 1: 421. 1753. Gen. Pl. ed. 5, 193. 1754". In Flora of North America Editorial Committee (ed.). Magnoliophyta: Caryophyllidae, Part 2. Flora of North America. 5. Oxford University Press. pp. 99–114. ISBN 978-0-19-522211-1.
  2. ^ Farmer, Carl. "Bog stitchwort, Stellaria uliginosa". West Highland Flora. Retrieved June 7, 2020.
  3. ^ "Stellaria uliginosa". Online Atlas of the British and Irish Flora. Biological Records Centre. Retrieved June 7, 2020.
  4. ^ Jalas, Jaakko; Suominen, Juha, eds. (1988). Distribution of Vascular Plants in Europe. Atlas Florae Europaeae. 3. Cambridge University Press. p. 76. ISBN 978-0-521-34272-8.
  5. ^ "Stellaria alsine Grimm, bog stitchwort". Go Botany. Native Plant Trust. Retrieved June 7, 2020.
  6. ^ Comité français de l'UICN (IUCN French Committee) & IUCN SSC Invasive Species Specialist Group (ISSG). "Stellaria alsine". Global Invasive Species Database. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved June 7, 2020.
  7. ^ Llewellyn, Peter (2012-02-12). "Stellaria alsine, bog stitchwort". Wild Flowers of Europe, Australia, Ireland and Britain. Retrieved June 7, 2020.