July 20, 2014 Oxyria digyna (mountain sorrel, wood sorrel, Alpine sorrel or Alpine mountain-sorrel) is a species of flowering plant in the Buckwheat Family (Polygonaceae). It is native to Arctic regions and mountainous parts of the northern hemisphere.Mountain sorrel is a perennial plant with a tough taproot that grows to a height of 10 to 30 cm (4 to 12 in). It grows in dense tufts, with stems that are usually unbranched and hairless. Both flowering stems and leaf stalks are somewhat reddish. The leaves are kidney-shaped, somewhat fleshy, on stalks from the basal part of the stem. Flowers are small, green and later reddish, and are grouped in an open upright cluster. The fruit is a small nut, encircled by a broad wing which finally turns red. Forming dense, red tufts, the plant is easily recognized. Oxyria digyna grows in wet places protected by snow in winter. Oxyria (from Greek) means “sour”.Mountain sorrel is common in the tundra of the Arctic. Further south, it has a circumboreal distribution, growing in high mountainous areas in the Northern Hemisphere such as the Alps, the Sierra Nevada, and the Cascade Range. It typically grows in alpine meadows, scree, snow-bed sites and beside streams.On the coast of Norway, the pollen of this plant has been found in peat bogs that are 12,600 years old, indicating that it must have been one of the first plants to colonise the area after the retreating ice age glaciers.The leaves of mountain sorrel have a fresh acidic taste and are rich in vitamin C, containing about 36 mg/100g. They were used by the Inuit to prevent and cure scurvy, and can be used in salads. It is called qunguliq in Inuktitut. The above-ground parts of the plant are edible when cooked . The plant is an important for for both insects an larger animals that feed on it in arctic and alpine regions where it occurs. Salix lanata, the woolly willow, is a subarctic species of willow native to Iceland, the Faeroes, northern Scandinavia, Finland, through to eastern Siberia. In Scotland it can be found in only a few localities of Perthshire, Angus and Aberdeen, generally on rocky mountain sides at altitudes between 600–900 m.Salix lanata is a low, many-branched, deciduous shrub, generally less than 100 cm (39 in) high by 150 cm (59 in) broad. The new twigs are hairy at first, soon becoming hairless and brown. The grey-green leaves are rather variable, but generally ovate up to 7 cm (3 in) long by up to 6.5 cm (3 in) wide, covered in silvery-grey “wool” to begin with but less so with age. The leaf margins are usually entire.The catkins appear in summer (May to July), with male and female catkins on separate plants (like all willows this species is dioecious). The female catkins are densely hairy. The petioles are usually less than 1 cm long, and the stipules usually 1 cm long by 0.6 cm wide, and persistent.The texture, colour and compact nature of this plant, together with its extreme hardiness, make it a valuable plant for cultivation. It has gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit. Eriophorum (cottongrass, cotton-grass or cottonsedge) is a genus of flowering plants in the family Cyperaceae, the sedge family. They are found throughout the arctic, subarctic and temperate portions of the Northern Hemisphere in acid bog habitats, being particularly abundant in Arctic tundra regions.They are herbaceous perennial plants with slender, grass-like leaves. The seed heads are covered in a fluffy mass of cotton which are carried on the wind to aid dispersal. In cold Arctic regions, these masses of translucent fibres also serve as ‘down’ – increasing the temperature of the reproductive organs during the Arctic summer by trapping solar radiation.