Sweden flowers: Alpine Bistort

Bistorta vivipara, Polygonum viviparum, Persicaria vivipara,
SE: Ormrot, DE: Knöllchen-Knöterich, Lebendgebärender Knöterich, Otterwurz,
NL: Knolduizendknoop, Levendbarende duizendknoop, UK: Alpine Bistort

Scientific name:  Bistorta vivipara (L.) Gray
Synonym name:  Persicaria vivipara (L.) Ronse Decr., Polygonum viviparum L.
Swedish name:  Ormrot
German name:  Knöllchen-Knöterich, Lebendgebärender Knöterich, Otterwurz
Nederlandse naam:  Knolduizendknoop, Levendbarende duizendknoop
English name:  Alpine Bistort
Family:  Polygonaceae, Knotweed family, Slideväxter

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Life form:  Clone forming, perennial forb. The ability to produce vegetative propagules or bulblets in its inflorescence enables this species to successfully propagate itself in an environment that may frequently be too harsh for sexual reproduction.
Stem:  Height 10–30 cm, simple, erect, unbranched, glabrous, bears few leaves, terminates in a narrow, dense flowering spike
Leaves:  Alternate, hairless above, hairy and greyish-green underneath. Basal leaves long-stalked, blade elliptic–lanceolate with rounded base; stem leaves stalkless or short-stalked
Flowers:  The basal part of the dense 3-6 cm long inflorescence is characterized by the presence of bulblets rather than flowers. Upward the spike bears numerous small flowers with pinkish-white petals
Flowering Period:  June, July, August
Fruits:  Tiny 3-angled fruits
Habitat:  Mountains

Vilda blommor i Sverige


Derivation of the botanical name:
Bistorta, bis, "twice," and tortus, "twisted," thus twice-twisted, in reference to the double turn of the fruit.
vivipara, Latin vivus "live," and parire "food" and means 'living food', which refers to the bulblets in the inflorescence.
Polygonum, Greek polys, "many," and gonu, "knee or joint," hence "many joints" because of the thickened joints on the stem.
Persicaria, the medieval name of a knotweed, from Persica, peach, alluding to the shape of the leaves.
  • The standard author abbreviation L. is used to indicate Carl Linnaeus (1707 – 1778), a Swedish botanist, physician, and zoologist, the father of modern taxonomy.
  • The standard author abbreviation Gray is used to indicate Samuel Frederick Gray (1766 – 1828), a British botanist, mycologist, and pharmacologist.
  • The standard author abbreviation Ronse Decr. is used to indicate Louis P. Ronse De Craene, a Belgium botanist.

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