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Montana Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Cowcockle - Vaccaria hispanica
Other Names:  Saponaria vaccaria, Vaccaria pyramidata

Non-native Species

Global Rank: GNR
State Rank: SNA

Agency Status
MNPS Threat Rank:
C-value: 1

External Links

General Description
Taprooted, glabrous and glaucous annual. Stems erect, 20–80 cm, branched above. Leaves mainly cauline, lanceolate to lance-ovate, 2–10 cm long, clasping the stem. Inflorescence a terminal, many-flowered, open, flat-topped cyme. Flowers: calyx glabrous, 12–15 mm long, becoming ovate and 5-angled; petals pink, clawed, the blade 5–8 mm long, shallowly 2-lobed; styles 2; stamens 10. Capsule oblong, shorter than the calyx tube (Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Species Range
Montana Range


Range Comments
Introduced worldwide and throughout temperate North America; native to Europe (Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations: 19

(Click on the following maps and charts to see full sized version) Map Help and Descriptions
Relative Density



(Observations spanning multiple months or years are excluded from time charts)



  • Additional ReferencesLegend:   View Online Publication
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    • Jones, W. W. 1901. Preliminary flora of Gallatin County. M.S. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State College. 78 pp.
    • Lesica, P., M.T. Lavin, and P.F. Stickney. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. Fort Worth, TX: BRIT Press. viii + 771 p.
    • Martinka, R.R. 1970. Structural characteristics and ecological relationships of male blue grouse (Dendragapus obscurus (Say)) territories in southwestern Montana. Ph.D Dissertation. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 73 p.
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Citation for data on this website:
Cowcockle — Vaccaria hispanica.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from