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Montana Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Arctic Eyebright - Euphrasia subarctica
Other Names:  Euphrasia arctica var. disjuncta, Euphrasia disjuncta [misapplied]

Species of Concern
Native Species

Global Rank: G5
State Rank: S2
(see State Rank Reason below)

Agency Status
MNPS Threat Rank: 3

External Links

State Rank Reason (see State Rank above)
In Montana, only known from a few locations in Glacier National Park, including one historical collection from 1897. Some plants in at least one population are subject to trampling by hikers. Current population levels and trends are unknown. However, its high-elevation habitat is relatively inaccessible, and there are no significant threats. Additional sites are likely to be documented.
General Description
Arctic Eyebright is a small annual with simple or few-branched stems that are up to 10 cm tall. The opposite, stalkless, egg-shaped leaves are 2-10 mm long, have toothed margins, and are sparsely hairy and glandular. Flowers are solitary in the axils of the reduced upper leaves. The white corolla is 3-5 mm long and has a hood-shaped upper lip and a 3-lobed lower lip. The 4-lobed calyx is nearly as long as the corolla. The fruit is a hairy, flattened, many-seeded capsule.

Flowering in late July-August.

Diagnostic Characteristics
A hand lens will be needed to observe this diminutive plant. Rhinanthus crista-gali has narrower, lance-shaped leaves, a yellow corolla, and an inflated calyx in fruit.

Species Range

Range Comments
Glacier County. AK to Greenland, south to BC, MT, MI, ME (Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations: 6

(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)

Open soil in grasslands, meadows, and tundra in the alpine zone.

Ecological Systems Associated with this Species

  • Additional ReferencesLegend:   View Online Publication
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    • Lesica, P. and B. McCune. 1992. Monitoring the effects of global warming using peripheral rare plants in wet alpine tundra in Glacier National Park, Montana. Unpublished report to Glacier National Park, Research Division, West Glacier, Montana 59936. 55pp.
    • Lesica, P., M.T. Lavin, and P.F. Stickney. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. Fort Worth, TX: BRIT Press. viii + 771 p.
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Citation for data on this website:
Arctic Eyebright — Euphrasia subarctica.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from