Red Listed Pink Heart-Cockle

While out walking at Miracle Beach Provincial Park yesterday I was extremely fortunate to find a single blooming Pink Heart-Cockle (Dicentra cardii). This plant is red-listed in British Columbia and it is rare to find it in flower. It has a brief “blink and you miss it” blooming period in late March/early April after which it withers away. One of the reasons why the provincial park was established at Miracle Beach was to protect this sensitive and rare plant.

Pink Heart-cockle (Dicentra cardii)
Pink Heart-cockle (Dicentra cardii), a red-listed plant found only in mature coastal Douglas-fir forests on Vancouver Island, British Columbia.

The Pink Heart-Cockle has beautiful lacy blue-green foliage and striking pink pendant cockleshell-like flowers that are suspended from the stem like miniature lockets. This rare plant has a very restricted range and all records have been from coastal Vancouver Island, British Columbia. Look for it at this time of year in mature coastal Douglas-fir/Hemlock forests growing in well rotted wood. Protocols for inventorying rare plants can be found at eFlora. Any sightings of the Pink Heart-Cockle should be documented and reported to the Conservation Data Centre.


For those having difficulty finding additional information about the Pink Heart-Cockle on-line please look a little closer at the image of the flower and note the date of this post.