Silene acaulis (L.) Jacq.
Moss campion, Cushion pink
Caryophyllaceae (Pink Family)
USDA Symbol: siac
This popular rock garden plant makes tight, moss-like cushions of almost spiny, glossy leaves which seem to flow over the rocks. Long, woody taproots anchor the perennial deeply in rock crevices. In flower, pink to lavender, five-petaled blossoms dot the bright-green mat in profusion. Dwarf plant, forming dense tussocks, with solitary pink to violet flowers at the ends of leafy branches.
This beautiful little mountain-dwelling wildflower forms extensive moss-like carpets in the western mountains but appears only locally in the East, where Mt. Washington in New Hampshire is its southern limit.
From the Image Gallery
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial
Leaf Complexity: Simple
Size Class: 0-1 ft.
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Pink , Purple
Bloom Time: Jun , Jul , Aug
DistributionUSA: AK , AZ , CO , ID , ME , MT , NH , NM , NV , OR , UT , WA , WY
Native Distribution: Circumpolar (var. exscapa), s. in N. America to OR, ID, n. MT & NH; extending s. in the Rockies to NM & AZ as var. subacaulescens
Native Habitat: Moist, chalky rock crevices in high mts.
Growing ConditionsLight Requirement: Sun
Soil Description: Rich, scree soil.
Conditions Comments: This is a trouble-free, rock garden plant.
BenefitConspicuous Flowers: yes
PropagationDescription: Can be propagated from stem cuttings. Plants come easily from seed, and should be transplanted to the rockery when the rosettes get 1-2 in. across.
Seed Collection: Not Available
Seed Treatment: Not Available
Commercially Avail: yes
Find Seed or Plants
View propagation protocol from Native Plants Network.
National Wetland Indicator Status
Additional resourcesUSDA: Find Silene acaulis in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Silene acaulis in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Silene acaulis
MetadataRecord Modified: 2015-12-09
Research By: TWC Staff