Search Field Guide
Advanced Search
MT Gov Logo
Montana Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Parry's Locoweed - Oxytropis parryi

Species of Concern
Native Species

Global Rank: G5
State Rank: S2S3
(see State Rank Reason below)
State Threat Score: No Known Threats
C-value: 10

Agency Status


External Links

State Rank Reason (see State Rank above)
Rare in Montana where it is known only from a few occurrences in the southwestern portion of the state. However, the species high-elevation habitat and its viability do not appear to be at significant risk at the current time.
  • Details on Status Ranking and Review
    Parry's Locoweed (Oxytropis parryi) Conservation Status Review
    Review Date = 03/21/2012
    View State Conservation Rank Criteria
    Population Size

    CommentPopulation size likely <10,000 individuals.

    Range Extent

    Score1 - Peripheral, Disjunct or Sporadic Distribution in MT: Widespread species that is peripheral, disjunct or sporadically distributed within MT such that it occurs in <5% of the state (<7,500 sq. miles or the combined area of Beaverhead and Ravalli Counties) or is restricted to 4-5 sub-basins.

    CommentPeripheral in southern Montana.

    Number of Populations

    Comment3 populations documented.

    Environmental Specificity

    Score0 - Low: Species is a generalist that occurs in a variety of habitats and/or is tolerant of disturbed or degraded habitats (C -Values of 1-4).

    CommentNot restricted to a rare or specialized habitat.


    Score0-1 - Stable to Minor Declines:

    CommentTrends in montana are unknown.


    Score0 - Low: Impacts, if any, to the species are expected to be minor or insignificant (affecting <10% of populations) in severity, scope and immediacy.

    CommentThreats to the species appear to be minimal.

    Intrinsic Vulnerability

    Score0 - Low Vulnerability: Species does not have any unusual or specific life history or biological attributes or limted reproductive potential which makes it susceptible to extirpation from stochastic events or other adverse impacts to its habitat and thus slow to recover.

General Description
Parry's Crazyweed is a low perennial herb with 1-4 leafless stems that are 2-7 cm high and arising from a branched rootcrown. The basal, pinnately compound leaves have 9-19 narrowly elliptic, pointed leaflets that are 3-10 mm long. Membranous appendages, or stipules, are attached to the base of the long petioles. The foliage is covered with long, silky hairs. 1-3 sessile, pea-like, purple flowers are clustered at the tip of the stem. The upper petal of each flower is 7-10 mm long, bent forward, and barely longer than the lateral (wing) petals. The united lower petals, or keel, are shorter and have a prolonged point at their tip. The black-hairy calyx has 5 narrow lobes and is 3/4 the length of the corolla. The ascending, narrowly egg-shaped pods are 15-23 mm long, covered with appressed black hairs, and have a short, pointed beak.

Fruiting in mid-August.

Diagnostic Characteristics
Oxytropis podocarpa and O. campestris var. cusickii may also have as few as 2-3 fruits per stem, but the former has inflated pods, while the latter has light yellow flowers.

Species Range
Montana Range Range Descriptions


Range Comments
Southeast MT and WY to NM, west to the mountains of central ID, NV, and CA.

Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations: 3

(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)

Gravelly, calcareous soil on exposed ridgetops in the alpine zone.
Predicted Suitable Habitat Model

This species has a Predicted Suitable Habitat Model available.

To learn how these Models were created see

Ecological Systems Associated with this Species

The following animal species have been reported as pollinators of this plant species or its genus where their geographic ranges overlap: Bombus appositus, Bombus bifarius, Bombus centralis, Bombus fervidus, Bombus flavifrons, Bombus melanopygus, Bombus nevadensis, Bombus rufocinctus, Bombus sylvicola, Bombus occidentalis, Bombus insularis, and Bombus kirbiellus (Macior 1974, Bauer 1983, Shaw and Taylor 1986, Williams et al. 2014, Miller-Struttmann and Galen 2014).

Threats or Limiting Factors
Threat impact not assigned because threats are not known (MTNHP Threat Assessment 2021).

  • Literature Cited AboveLegend:   View Online Publication
    • Bauer, P.J. 1983. Bumblebee pollination relationships on the Beartooth Plateau tundra of Southern Montana. American Journal of Botany. 70(1): 134-144.
    • Macior, L.M. 1974. Pollination ecology of the Front Range of the Colorado Rocky Mountains. Melanderia 15: 1-59.
    • Miller-Struttmann, N.E. and C. Galen. 2014. High-altitude multi-taskers: bumble bee food plant use broadens along an altitudinal productivity gradient. Oecologia 176:1033-1045.
    • Shaw, D.C. and R.J. Taylor.1986. Pollination ecology of an alpine fell-field community in the North Cascades. Northwest Science 60:21-31.
    • Williams, P., R. Thorp, L. Richardson, and S. Colla. 2014. Bumble Bees of North America. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. 208 p.
  • Additional ReferencesLegend:   View Online Publication
    Do you know of a citation we're missing?
    • Aho, Ken Andrew. 2006. Alpine and Cliff Ecosystems in the North-Central Rocky Mountains. Ph.D. Dissertation. Bozeman, Montana: Montana State University. 343 p.
    • Lesica, P., M.T. Lavin, and P.F. Stickney. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. Fort Worth, TX: BRIT Press. viii + 771 p.
    • Lesica, P., M.T. Lavin, and P.F. Stickney. 2022. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants, Second Edition. Fort Worth, TX: BRIT Press. viii + 779 p.
    • Lesica, P., P. Husby, and S. V. Cooper. 1998. Noteworthy collections: Montana. Madrono 45:328-330.
  • Web Search Engines for Articles on "Parry's Locoweed"
Login Logout
Citation for data on this website:
Parry's Locoweed — Oxytropis parryi.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from