Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Southern Dawnflower - Stylisma humistrata   (Walter) Chapman
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Section 6 » Order Solanales » Family Convolvulaceae
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Author(Walter) Chapman
DistributionScattered over most of the Coastal Plain, though scarce to locally absent in the eastern portions. Disjunct specimen records for the southwestern Piedmont (Cleveland County), but otherwise limited to the Coastal Plain.

This is a Southern species that does range north of NC, into southeastern VA, and then south to northern FL and eastern TX.
AbundanceGenerally uncommon to infrequent, mainly in the central and southeastern portions, but rather rare to rare in the Sandhills region and in the northern portions. Less numerous than S. patens and S. angustifolia in the Sandhills and close to the SC border.
HabitatThis is another Stylisma of sandy soils, usually in pine/scrub oak sandhills. It also grows along sandy roadsides, and even on dry portions of stream terraces.
PhenologyBlooms from June to August, and fruits shortly after flowering.
IdentificationThis is a slender herbaceous vine, trailing on the ground to about 3-4' long. It has alternate but rather broad leaves, elliptic and somewhat rounded at both ends, about 1.5" long and about 3/4" wide, about 2 times as long as wide. From the axils grow 3 (to 7) small flowers, on stalks around 1" long, each white flower being funnel-shaped but barely 4/5" long and across. There are several similar species, also prostrate like this. S. patens has leaves mostly about 4-6 times as long as wide, as opposed to about 7-15 times as long as wide in S. angustifolia, which has linear leaves. Also, S. patens has quite hairy sepals, whereas those of S. angustifolia are glabrous. These two species usually have solitary flowers instead of 3-7 in a cluster. The quite rare S. pickeringii has even narrower leaves, about 2" long but barely 1/10" wide, essentially needle-like, and usually stiffy erect; its flowers are also quite erect and have villous sepals. Biologists who work in the sandy parts of the southern Coastal Plain are probably familiar with all four of these and can identify each without much problem, even by the leaves. However, for many other people, you may have to collect or measure a leaf or look at the sepals or other characters to be sure.
Taxonomic CommentsAll Stylisma species were formerly named as Bonamia species.

Other Common Name(s)None
State RankS3? [S3S4]
Global RankG4G5
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