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Montana Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Explorer's Gentian - Gentiana calycosa

Native Species

Global Rank: G4
State Rank: S4

Agency Status
MNPS Threat Rank:
C-value: 7

External Links

General Description
Glabrous perennial from a branched caudex. Stems ascending, simple, 10–30 cm. Leaves cauline, ovate, 1–3 cm long; the lowest smaller. Inflorescence a solitary, terminal flower. Flowers 5-merous, funnelform to campanulate; calyx 12–22 mm long, the lobes rounded; corolla deep blue, 32–44 mm long, plicate with fringed plaits between erect to spreading lobes. Capsule 15–25 mm long (Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Our plants have been called variety obtusiloba C.L. Hitchc.

Species Range

Range Comments
BC, AB south to CA, NV, AZ and WY (Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations: 240

(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)

Moist to wet soil of meadows, cliffs, open forest, often where snow lies late; subalpine, alpine (Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

  • Additional ReferencesLegend:   View Online Publication
    Do you know of a citation we're missing?
    • Fultz, J.E. 2005. Effects of shelterwood management on flower-visiting insects and their floral resources. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 163 p.
    • 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.
    • Wachter, D.H. 1995. The ecology of selected grasshopper species along an elevational gradient. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, Montana: Montana State University. 59 p.
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Citation for data on this website:
Explorer's Gentian — Gentiana calycosa.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from