Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Little Floating-heart - Nymphoides cordata   (Elliott) Fernald
Members of Menyanthaceae:
Members of Nymphoides with account distribution info or public map:
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Section 6 » Order Solanales » Family Menyanthaceae
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Author(Elliott) Fernald
DistributionStrictly in the Sandhills region, in the souhwestern Coastal Plain.

A widely ranging species of the Atlantic and Gulf Coastal Plains. It ranges from eastern Canada south to western FL, and west to LA, but seemingly skipping over VA.
AbundanceUncommon on the landscape, but can be locally abundant at Sandhills Game Land lakes and ponds in Richmond and Scotland counties; scarce in Moore, Hoke and Cumberland counties. This is a Watch List species.
HabitatThis is a species of acidic waters of beaver ponds, and man-made lakes and ponds. It seldom is seen in sluggish streams.
PhenologyBlooms from April to August, and fruits soon after flowering.
IdentificationThis aquatic, floating species is a smaller version of N. aquatica, which grows mostly to the east of this species in the Coastal Plain. The floating leaves are only 2 inches across, rounded with a cordate base, and strongly mottled purple-brown with green. N. aquatica has leaves twice as large and they are solid green above. Each species has several 5-petaled white flowers poking a few inches above the water surface, but in this species the spread flower is only about 1/2-inch across. This is quite an attractive species, especially with the strongly mottled leaves, not to mention the white flowers. Thankfully, you should be able to find it fairly readily by stopping at a few of the lakes and ponds on the Sandhills Game Land.
Taxonomic CommentsNone

Other Common Name(s)None
State RankS2
Global RankG5
State StatusW7
US Status
USACE-agcpOBL link
USACE-empOBL link
County Map - click on a county to view source of record.
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B.A. SorrieScotland County, 2015, Sandhills Game Land, Kinney Cameron Lake. ScotlandPhoto_natural
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