Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Woodland Sunflower - Helianthus divaricatus   L.
Members of Helianthus with account distribution info or public map:
Google Images
Section 6 » Order Asterales » Family Asteraceae
Show/Hide Synonym
DistributionMountains, Piedmont, Sandhills (local), and several places in the Coastal Plain with Piedmont-like affinities (Cape Fear River, Island Creek in Craven County). The Dare County collection came from a roadside on Roanoke Island.

Que. to Ont. and IA, south to northern FL, LA, and OK.
AbundanceFairly common to locally common in the mountains and Piedmont; can be locally abundant. Rare to locally uncommon in the western Coastal Plain and Sandhills, and very rare in the eastern portions. Usually forms patches via long horizontal rhizomes.
HabitatDry to mesic soils of a variety of open woodlands and forests, such as oak-hickory-dogwood, especially openings and clearings; bean dips in Longleaf Pine-Wiregrass uplands (Sandhills); roadbanks, borders, and powerline clearings.
PhenologyFlowering and fruiting late June-August.
IdentificationThe neatly-arranged pairs of long-triangular, rough-surfaced leaves (almost like sandpaper on the upper surface), coupled with the relatively small heads should clinch the identification. Plants mostly grow 1.5-3.5 feet tall and usually occur in dense patches or colonies.
Taxonomic CommentsNone

Other Common Name(s)Rough Sunflower. Woodland Sunflower is a poor name, as it is no more a woodland species than a number of other sunflowers, because it mostly grows along forest borders like others. However, this is the most often used common name.
State RankS5
Global RankG5
State Status
US Status
County Map - click on a county to view source of record.
Select a source
Select an occurrence type