Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Coastal Bedstraw - Galium bermudense   L.
Members of Rubiaceae:
Members of Galium with account distribution info or public map:
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Section 6 » Family Rubiaceae
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DistributionThis is primarily coastal in NC, most often encountered on barrier islands.

This Southern species ranges north along the coast to southern NJ; it occurs south to southern FL and west to eastern TX.
AbundanceInfrequent to locally fairly common, with it being not overly difficult to find in maritime forests and other sandy wooded places near the coast.
HabitatThis species occurs in sandy soil, usually shaded to partly shaded. It is most often found in maritime forests, but also along edges and openings in such forests, and in other sandy woods near the coast.
PhenologyBlooms from June to August, and fruits from August to September.
IdentificationThis is an evergreen species, with leathery, dark green leaves in whorls of 4. The stem is weak and somewhat branched, usually leaning or lying along the ground, reaching about 1.5 feet long on average. The stem and leaves are rather hairy. The leaves are elliptical and small, about 2/5-inch long and half as wide. The small white flowers are usually in upper leaf axils and usually just 2-5 flowers per cluster. Only this species and G. uniflorum (in NC) have fleshy fruits, each being purple and about 1/6-inch across. That species occurs farther inland in the state, and it has linear leaves.
Taxonomic CommentsMost earlier references named this species as G. hispidulum, and some probably still do. However, Weakley (2018) says that G. bermudense "has priority" as the name for this species.

Other Common Name(s)Bermuda Bedstraw
State RankS2S3 [S3]
Global RankG5
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US Status
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B.A. SorrieBuxton Woods, late June 2013. DareBILPhoto_natural

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