An Analysis of the Distribution, Ecology, and Status of Bugseeds (Corispermum) in Canada


  • Diana Bizecki Robson The Manitoba Museum, 190 Rupert Avenue, Winnipeg, Manitoba, R3B 0N2



bugseeds, Corispermum, distribution, habitat, psammophile, status, Canada


The bugseeds (Corispermum spp.) are a genus of annual plants that are uncommon due to their psammophilic, ruderal habit. Bugseeds are typically found in natural areas with some bare sand, like sand dunes, but are also present in anthropogenically impacted sandy or gravelly areas. Increasing dune stabilization may be causing the endangerment of some Bugseed species. Assessing the rarity of the five species in Canada is hindered by the lack of recently collected specimens and the use of out-dated nomenclature in herbaria. Specimens of bugseeds from major herbaria all across Canada were examined and re-identified using the most recent taxonomic treatment in the Flora of North America. Hairy Bugseed (C. villosum) was the most commonly collected taxon and Hooker's Bugseed (C. hookeri var. pseudodeclinatum) the rarest. The natural distribution of all taxa, except Alaskan Bugseed (C. ochotense) which is only found in the far north, is from British Columbia to Ontario. Hairy, Hooker's and American Bugseed (C. americanum) are also found in Quebec, where they may have been introduced from further west. Summaries of Bugseed localities and habitats, and distribution maps are presented to facilitate the status assessment of plants in this genus.