jumpseed

(Persicaria virginiana)

               
Conservation Status

IUCN Red List

not yet assessed

jumpseed

NatureServe

N5 - Secure

SNR - Unranked

Minnesota

not listed

Wetland
Indicator
Status

Great Plains

FAC - Facultative

Midwest

FAC - Facultative

Northcentral & Northeast

FAC - Facultative

Nativity

Native

Occurrence

 

Habitat

Moist to wet. Rich forests, floodplain forests, woodlands, thickets. Full or partial shade.

Flowering

July to September

     
Flower Color

White

     
Height

20 to 40

     

Identification

This is a 20 to 40 tall, erect, perennial forb that rises from a rhizome. It often forms clumps.

The stems are erect, ribbed, and either branched above the middle or unbranched. They do not have prickles. The lower stem is hairless or almost hairless. The upper stem is covered with, straight, stiff, appressed, downward-pointing hairs.

The leaves are alternate, 2 to 6¾ long, and ¾ to 4 wide. Lower leaves are on to ¾ long leaf stalks, upper leaves are nearly stalkless. The leaf stalks are not winged. There is a small sheath (ocrea) that surrounds the stem at the base of each leaf stalk. The ocrea is to ¾ long, brownish, thin, and membranous. It is covered with brownish or rust-colored, straight, stiff, appressed hairs. The margins have a fringe of upward-pointing, 1 32 to long bristles. The leaf blade is broadly lance-shaped to egg-shaped. It is tapered at the base and tapers to a sharp point at the tip. The upper surface is rough to the touch and sparsely hairy to hairless. The lower surface is hairy. The margins are untoothed.

The inflorescence is a thin, 4 to 14 long, interrupted, unbranched, spike-like array (raceme) at the end of the stem. Flowers appear in widely-spaced clusters of 1 to 3.

Each flower is about long. There are 4 white to greenish-white, sometimes pinkish sepals. There are no petals. There are 4 stamens with white filaments and pale yellow or white anthers. The stamens protrude slightly from the sepals. There are 2 styles.

The fruit is a brown to dark-brown, hard, egg-shaped achene. The sepals persist, covering all but the tip of the fruit. The styles persist, forming a hooked beak at the tip of the fruit. Bumping the plant will cause the mature achene to jump about long off the fruiting stalk, giving this plant its common name. The hooked beak aids dispersal in the fur of animals.

 
Similar
Species

 


Distribution Distribution Map  

Sources: 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 28.


Comments

 


Taxonomy

Family:

Polygonaceae (buckwheat)

 

Subfamily:

Polygonoideae

 

Tribe:

Persicarieae

 

Genus:

Persicaria

 

Section:

Tovara (jumpseed)

 
Synonyms

Antenoron virginianum

Polygonum virginianum

Polygonum virginianum var. glaberrimum

Tovara virginiana

Tovara virginiana var. glaberrima

 
Common
Names

jumpseed

Virginia knotweed

woodland knotweed


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glossary

Achene

A dry, one-chambered, single-seeded fruit, formed from a single carpel, with the seed attached to the membranous outer layer (wall) only by the seed stalk; the wall, formed entirely from the wall of the superior ovary, does not split open at maturity, but relies on decay or predation to release the contents.

 

Beak

A comparatively short and stout, narrow or prolonged tip on a thickened organ, as on some fruits and seeds.

 

Fascicle

A small bundle or cluster, often sheathed at the base, as with pine needles.

 

Node

The small swelling of the stem from which one or more leaves, branches, or buds originate.

 

Ocrea

A sheath around the stem at the base of a petiole formed from the stipules; a feature of many members of the Polygonaceae.

 

Raceme

An unbranched, elongated inflorescence with stalked flowers. The flowers mature from the bottom up.

 

Rhizome

A horizontal, usually underground stem. It serves as a reproductive structure, producing roots below and shoots above at the nodes.

 

Sepal

An outer floral leaf, usually green but sometimes colored, at the base of a flower.

 

Stipule

A small, leaf-like, scale-like, glandular, or rarely spiny appendage found at the base of a leaf stalk, usually occurring in pairs and usually dropping soon.

       

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