Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Seashore Mallow - Kosteletzkya pentacarpos   (L.) Ledebour
Members of Malvaceae:
Only member of Kosteletzkya in NC.
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Section 6 » Family Malvaceae
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Author(L.) Ledebour
DistributionThroughout the tidewater areas of the Coastal Plain and barrier islands, with records for almost all counties bordering salt or brackish waters.

This is a coastal species, ranging from NJ south to FL (where found nearly statewide), and west along the coast to southern TX.
AbundanceCommon and widespread in tidal marshes, even well upriver where somewhat fresh (e.g., Meherrin, Tar, Neuse, etc.).
HabitatThis is a species found in brackish marshes, and also in tidal freshwater marshes far upriver, as long as there is some tidal amplitude.
See also Habitat Account for Coastal Freshwater and Low-Salinity Marshes
PhenologyBlooms from July to October, and fruits shortly after flowering.
IdentificationThis is a familiar coastal wildflower, with a typically branched stem, rising to about 3 feet tall. The alternate leaves are rather large and somewhat triangular-shaped, about 4 inches long and 2 inches wide, usually with one or two small, triangular side lobes. The large flowers are mostly in terminal racemes. The 5 rounded petals are pink, without red at the base, and the spread flower is about 2-3 inches across. The only remotely similar species is the palustris form of H. moscheutos, which has a larger all-pink flower, grows strictly in freshwater sites, and generally has only ovate leaves with no lobes.
Taxonomic CommentsMost references named this species as K. virginica; newer ones name it as K. pentacarpos.

Other Common Name(s)Saltmarsh Mallow, Virginia Saltmarsh Mallow
State RankS4
Global RankG5
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