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Little Leaf Mountain Laurel
Kalmia polifolia
About Little Leaf Mountain Laurel (Kalmia polifolia) 0 Nurseries Carry This Plant Kalmia polifolia, commonly called bog-laurel or swamp laurel, is an evergreen shrub of cold acidic bogs, in the family Ericaceae. It is native to north-eastern North America, from Newfoundland to Hudson Bay southwards. Its leaves are arranged oppositely on the branch. They are waxy with an entire, revolute margin. The base of the petiole is pressed against the stem. Below each leaf base there are ridges, where it appears as though a part of the leaf is curled around the circumference of the stem. This is especially noticeable lower on the plant. This plant is related to Labrador tea Ledum groenlandicum, which native Americans used to make a drink from its leaves. To learn more about this species and a similar looking taxa, Brewer's Mountain Heather (Phyllodoce breweri), visit the Jepson Herbarium's YouTube channel and watch a short video:
Plant Description
Plant Type
Plant Type

0.33 - 1.6 ft tall


Wildlife Supported

Butterflies & moths hosted ( 6 likely * ) SHOW ALL

Landscaping Information

For propagating by seed: No treatment.

Sunset Zones
Sunset Zones?
1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 14, 15, 16, 17

Natural Setting
Site Type
Site Type
Wet places

Annual Precipitation: 6.5" - 125.5", Summer Precipitation: 0.26" - 4.33", Coldest Month: 9.1" - 52.8", Hottest Month: 32.8" - 77.4", Humidity: 0.70" - 28.26", Elevation: 376" - 14019"

Alternative Names
Botanical Names: Kalmia polifolia ssp. microphylla
Common Names: Alpine Bog Laurel, Alpine Laurel

Sources include: Wikipedia. All text shown in the "About" section of these pages is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. Plant observation data provided by the participants of the California Consortia of Herbaria, Sunset information provided by Jepson Flora Project. Propogation from seed information provided by the Santa Barbara Botanical Garden from "Seed Propagation of Native California Plants" by Dara E. Emery. Sources of plant photos include CalPhotos, Wikimedia Commons, and independent plant photographers who have agreed to share their images with Calscape. Other general sources of information include Calflora, CNPS Manual of Vegetation Online, Jepson Flora Project, Las Pilitas, Theodore Payne, Tree of Life, The Xerces Society, and information provided by CNPS volunteer editors, with special thanks to Don Rideout. Climate data used in creation of plant range maps is from PRISM Climate Group, Oregon State University, using 30 year (1981-2010) annual "normals" at an 800 meter spatial resolution.

Links:   Jepson eFlora Taxon Page  CalPhotos  Wikipedia  Calflora

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