Family: Portulacaceae Juss.

Lewisia rediviva

Distribution: North American species found from the south of British Columbia to southeast California and northern Colorado. It does not reach Pacific coast. It exists in two varieties.

Ecology: Grows in dry rocky meadows and slopes in foothills, at elevations from 60 to 1900 m. Variety L. r. var. minor is found at higher elevations than the nominate variety rediviva (1900–2800 m). It is known only from California’s Sierra Nevada and one county in Utah.

Description: Perennial herb, stem leaning to erect, 1–3 cm long. Leaves of basal rosette are linear, 0.5–5 cm long, succulent, smooth margins, drying up before flowering. Flowers solitary, terminal, bracts 4–8, membranous, linear to narrowly lanceolate, 4–10 mm long; sepals 4–9, elliptical to ovoid, 10–25 mm; petals 10–19, 15–35 mm long, pink to white, or deep rose; stamens 20–50; pistil 1. Fruit is a capsule 5–6 mm long, seeds black, shiny.

Use: The roots despite of the bitterness were consumed by native people for their high nutritional value and for traditional medicine. Favourite rock garden plant in Europe.

Note: Bitterroot is a state flower of the state of Montana.

Lewisia rediviva
Lewisia rediviva

These images were taken in USA, southern Montana (July 1977).