Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Sandhill St. John's-wort - Hypericum lloydii   (Svenson) W.P. Adams
Members of Hypericaceae:
Members of Hypericum with account distribution info or public map:
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Section 6 » Order Theales » Family Hypericaceae
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Author(Svenson) W.P. Adams
DistributionA narrow NE-SW distribution in the state, centered just west of the Fall Line. Ranges from the upper Coastal Plain (including the Sandhills) west to the eastern Piedmont. There is an outlier specimen record for Pitt County.

The global range is also centered on the Atlantic Coast Fall Line, ranging north only to extreme southern VA, and into central GA and eastern AL. This range covers only a few dozen counties, mainly in the Carolinas.
AbundanceUncommon to infrequent in the lower Piedmont; generally rare to very uncommon in the Coastal Plain, including the Sandhills. It can occasionally be seen in large numbers in a few favored sites.
HabitatThis species has a narrow habitat preference, favoring partial sunlight of dry woodland borders. It is most often seen along the margins of pine or pine-oak forests, and can be found on adjacent dry roadbanks. It can also be found at sandy margins of granitic flatrocks. It is not as numerous in sandhills forest types as one might expect.
PhenologyBlooms and fruits from June to September.
IdentificationThis is one of several decumbent, matted deciduous Hypericum shrub species that have awl or needle-like leaves. It grows only to about 6-8 inches tall, with numerous branches from the base, some erect and other spreading. The linear leaves grow to an average of about 2/3-inch, and other leaves can grow in the axils so as to make plants appear to have whorled leaves. The bright yellow, 5-petaled flowers usually grow in small clusters at the ends of branches but can grow in axils. When in full bloom, the plant is quite showy and a colony of them can be quite spectacular along a woodland margin. Other similar decumbent or low-growing needle-leaved Hypericum species grow only in the Coastal Plain, in wetlands, and thus this species should not be confused in flower. There are other needle-leaved species in its habitat, such as Phlox nivalis, so be careful identifying the species when not in bloom.
Taxonomic CommentsNone

Other Common Name(s)Lloyd’s St. John’s-wort. This might be the better common name, as it is not common in the Sandhills, and other Hypericum species occur there, though most in the genus grow in wetlands in that region.
State RankS3? [S3S4]
Global RankG4?
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US Status
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Photo Gallery
B.A. SorriePiedmont, roadside, Wadsworth Road, June 2015. MoorePhoto_natural
B.A. SorrieRoadside, Whispering Pines, June 2010. MoorePhoto_natural
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