Small-flowered Prairie Star – Lithophragma parviforum

Saxifrage Family – Saxifragaceae

Actual flower size: 3/4 inch across

Actual flower size: 3/4 inch across

Small-flowered Prairie Star is also called Small-flowered Woodland Star and Fringecup.

Plant Description: Small-flowered Prairie Star is a 5 to 10 inch tall perennial, sometimes with multiple flowering stems. The stems are sticky, hairy and usually purplish toward the top with a loose cluster of 5 to 11 flowers at the top. The few basal leaves are hairy, about 1 inch long, on long petioles, and deeply divided into 3 to 5 leaflets, which are then divided once or twice more.  There are 1 to 3 smaller stem leaves.

Flower Description: The flowers are 3/4 inches across. The 5 sepals form a reddish or green, hairy cup with 5 pointy lobes. The 5 white to pinkish petals are 1/3 inch long and deeply divided into 3 lobes.  These petals sit on the edge of the cup and the stamens and pistils are hidden inside.

Ecology: Dry open grassy slopes, rocky openings at low  to middle elevations on both sides of the Cascades, including the Puget Sound area.