Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Virginia Threeseed Mercury - Acalypha virginica   L.
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Section 6 » Order Euphorbiales » Family Euphorbiaceae
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AuthorL.
DistributionPiedmont, lower elevations of the mountains, plus a few Coastal Plain spots. There are few recent specimens (collector apathy?).

ME to IN and KS, south to central GA and TX.
AbundanceInfrequent to fairly common in the Piedmont and mountains. Very rare in the western Coastal Plain, and absent from the Sandhills region. Much less numerous than the other two native species in the genus. The State Rank is probably best at S4 as opposed to S5.
HabitatDrier soils of forest and woodland openings, meadows, fields, glades. Also in moist soils of stream margins, narrow floodplains. Has some tendency toward occurring on circumneutral soil.
PhenologyFlowering and fruiting late June-October.
IdentificationVirginia Threeseed Mercury differs from Slender (A. gracilens) and Common (A. rhomboidea) threeseed mercuries by its spreading hairs on the stem and branches (vs. short and appressed). It has narrowly elliptical leaves with long leafstalks (1/3 to 1/2 the length of the blade), longer than those of Slender Threeseed (less than 1/3 the length of the blade) but shorter than most plants of Common Threeseed, which has widely rhombic leaves. Virginia Threeseed Mercury usually grows about 1.5-2 feet tall, typically with fewer leaves than on Slender Threeseed Mercury.
Taxonomic CommentsNone

Other Common Name(s)Virginia Copperleaf
State RankS5 [S4]
Global RankG5
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