Draba reptans
Creeping whitlow grass
Image of Draba reptans

Photo by Bradford S. Slaughter 

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Key Characteristics

Small annual forb (20 cm) of sandy fields and remnant dry prairies and savannas; basal rosette of small leaves; stem leaves mostly absent; flowers white, with four small (3 mm) petals, borne in a crowded cluster; fruits elongated, flattened.

Status and Rank

  • State Status: T
  • State Rank: S1
  • Global Rank: G5


County NameNumber of OccurrencesYear Last Observed
St. Clair11913
Distribution map for Draba reptans

Updated 5/15/2018. Information is summarized from MNFI's database of rare species and community occurrences. Data may not reflect true distribution since much of the state has not been thoroughly surveyed.


Found in oak savanna remnants on steep hillsides (black oak-white oak), especially those adjacent to large rivers and lakes in southern Lower Michigan. Most examples of these sites are small and becoming degraded through further landscape fragmentation and lack of management.

Natural Community Types


For each species, lists of natural communities were derived from review of the nearly 6,500 element occurrences in the MNFI database, in addition to herbarium label data for some taxa. In most cases, at least one specimen record exists for each listed natural community. For certain taxa, especially poorly collected or extirpated species of prairie and savanna habitats, natural community lists were derived from inferences from collection sites and habitat preferences in immediately adjacent states (particularly Indiana and Illinois). Natural communities are not listed for those species documented only from altered or ruderal habitats in Michigan, especially for taxa that occur in a variety of habitats outside of the state.

Natural communities are not listed in order of frequency of occurrence, but are rather derived from the full set of natural communities, organized by Ecological Group. In many cases, the general habitat descriptions should provide greater clarity and direction to the surveyor. In future versions of the Rare Species Explorer, we hope to incorporate natural community fidelity ranks for each taxon.

Associated Plants

Little bluestem, red cedar, kitten-tails, side-oats grama grass, prairie buttercup, black oak, white oak, Pennsylvania sedge, small skullcap, bastard toadflax, and black-eyed Susan.


This species requires the maintenance of grassland/savanna community through activities like brush removal and prescribed burns. Sites tend to heavily brush in without natural disturbance regime.

General Survey Guidelines

Random meander search covers areas that appear likely to have rare taxa, based on habitat and the judgment of the investigator.

Survey Methods

Page Citation

Michigan Natural Features Inventory. 2007. Rare Species Explorer (Web Application). Available online at http://mnfi.anr.msu.edu/explorer [Accessed Aug 18, 2018]


Survey References

Technical References

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