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Mar 28

Does anyone know what this plant is?


Edited: Mar 28

I am in the process of preparing to paint some Norwegian plants found in the Norwegian mountains. However, all are native to this country (the UK), although might be more rare.


I am struggling with one plant in particular as I can't quite identify it. I have some photos here which the books tell me can be confused with each other. I know two of them very well and they are very distinct from each other. One is a Vaccinium oxycoccus - which everyone will know as a Cranberry - although in the shops they are from cultivars and therefore larger. The plant is long and trailing and found in very boggy areas. The leaf is very small 4-5 mm long. This one was found at 900m over sea level, but I have seen them lower down too.

The next plant I also know very well too and is found in the same habitat as the Cranberry. It is Andromeda polifolia (named by Linnaeus). The common name is Bog Rosemary. The picture I have here shows it well ensconced in Sphagnum and together with Cloudberry and Bog Blueberry leaves.The leaf is a blue-green colour, and about 2 cm long. It is very narrow as the edges are furled inwards. The veins are very clear


The plant I want to find out about is in the following picture. I haven't seen it in flower, but it is found in exactly the same area as the other two. The growing tip reminds me of the Cranberry, but far down it feels more woody. The leaf is in between the size of the Cranberry and the Bog Rosemary, shape reminds me of the Cranberry, but the veins remind me of the Bog Rosemary. I didn't mention that the leaf of the Cranberry doesn't have clear side veins, only the central one. Each of the plants have leaf edges that are curled under and all of them keep their foliage during the winter.


Looking at this picture, the leaves look very similar in shape and form - but not size, to the Vaccinium vitas-idaea (Cowberry). It is not a Cowberry. Actually, the leaf lying across the plant at the front of the picture is Cranberry leaf.


I would be very grateful if anyone knows what this plant is please. It will not be part of the series of pictures I am doing at the moment, but it just grates that I cannot seem to find out what it actually is.

I tried to identify it through pl@ntNet - one of the suggestions was Cowberry so as you say it must be very similar and the leaf did look similar but it wasn't the first suggestion - there were so many other possibilities but they appeared even less of a match. I hope you get an id soon because I agree it is frustrating.

Thank you for having a go Alison. It’s funny, I agree that from the photo one would think it might be Cowberry, but when you see the size of the leaves in relation to the Cranberry (only a little smaller), you realise it isn’t. When I first saw it, I thought it might be variant of the Bog Rosemary, but he I saw more of it, and it wasn’t.


Hopefully, if I get o see the flower this year, it might help. I guess it is Ericacious, like many of the others.


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