Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
Southern Wetland Flora
Field Office Guide to Plant Species
Ascyrum stans Michx.
- Family: St. Johnswort (Hypericaceae)
- Flowering: June-October
- Field Marks: This small shrub is distinguished by its opposite leaves, four petals, and the
two sepals rounded at the tip.
- Habitat: Moist to dry soils in pinelands, flatwoods, stream banks, wet prairies, damp thickets,
- Habit: Slender shrub, the bark becoming shredded at maturity.
- Stems: Upright, slightly woody, slender, smooth, up to 3 feet tall.
- Leaves: Opposite, simple, leathery, lanceolate to oblong to ovate, rounded at the tip, rounded
or tapering or even slightly clasping at the base, up to 1 1/2 inches long, up to 3/4 inch wide.
- Flowers: Solitary or few together in the axils of the leaves, up to 1 1/2 inches across, subtended
by a pair of bracts.
- Sepals: 4, green, dotted, the outer two ovate, up to 3/4 inch long, the inner two lanceolate.
- Petals: 4, yellow, free from each other, 1/2-3/4 inch long.
- Stamens: Numerous.
- Pistils: Ovary superior; styles 3-4.
- Fruits: Capsules ovoid, smooth, up to nearly 1/2 inch long, containing many brown seeds.
- Notes: This plant closely resembles Ascyrum hypericoides, whose habitat overlaps this plant,
but can be distinguished by having 3-4 styles and broader leaves up to 3/4 inch wide, whereas
A. hypericoides has only 2 styles and narrower leaves up to 1/3 inch wide.
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