Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Cutleaf Toothwort - Cardamine concatenata   (Michaux) O. Schwarz
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Section 6 » Order Capparales » Family Brassicaceae
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Author(Michaux) O. Schwarz
DistributionThroughout the mountains, and nearly throughout the Piedmont. Extends into the upper Coastal Plain only along a few large brownwater rivers (Roanoke and Cape Fear) to Martin and Cumberland counties.

This is a very widespread species in the East, ranging from southern Canada south to central SC and barely to eastern TX.
AbundanceCommon nearly throughout the mountains, mainly in lower elevations. Fairly common to locally common in most of the Piedmont, but not common in parts of the western Piedmont (for unknown reasons) and along the Fall Line. Locally scarce along the Roanoke and Cape Fear rivers in the upper Coastal Plain.
HabitatThis is a species of rich hardwood forests, usually on slopes, much less so in bottomlands. It clearly favors circumneutral soil, and it occurs on richer soils than does C. angustata, though both can occur in the same general area. Rich Cove Forests and Basic Mesic Forests are primary community types.
See also Habitat Account for Rich Wet-Mesic Hardwood Forests
PhenologyBlooms from March to May, and fruits from April to May.
IdentificationThis species is rather similar to C. angustata, in that it grows to about 9-12" tall, and occurs in extensive stands. Unlike that species and C. diphylla, this species has no basal leaves (at least during flowering and fruiting), and it has about 3 stem leaves, each one strongly ternately-divided into 3 finger-like segments, quite serrated, and about 2-3" long. Topping the stem is the flower cluster, with a handful in bloom at a time, each with 4 white petals and a spread of about 2/3" across or long. This is a very familiar spring wildflower in the lower slopes in the mountains, and at least locally so in most of the Piedmont. In this latter province, it is a good marker species of Basic Mesic Forests. Note that C. dissecta also grows in Basic Mesic Forests in the Piedmont; it has highly dissected leaflets that have linear to filiform segments, as opposed to finger-like segments with strong serrations.
Taxonomic CommentsOlder references named it as Dentaria, and the scientific epithet was often given as laciniata.

Other Common Name(s)Essentially none
State RankS4 [S5]
Global RankG5
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