late horse-gentian

(Triosteum perfoliatum)

               
Conservation Status

IUCN Red List

not yet assessed

late horse-gentian

NatureServe

N5? - Secure

SNR - Unranked

Minnesota

not listed

Nativity

Native

Occurrence

 

Habitat

Dry. Woods, thickets.

Flowering

May to June

Flower Color

Maroon, reddish-purple to brown, or yellowish-green

Height

2 to 4


Identification

This is a 2 to 4 tall, erect, perennial forb rising on 1 or more stems from a taproot.

The stems are 2 to 4 tall and are covered with short, glandular hairs that are less than .5 mm long. Mixed in with the glandular hairs are longer non-glandular hairs.

The leaves are opposite, light green, untoothed, and attached to the stem without a stalk. They are 4 to 12 long, 1½ to 6 wide, and broadly-elliptic. They taper gradually to a pointed tip and taper broadly to the base. They have sparse, glandular hairs on the upper surface, and dense, soft hairs on the lower surface. At least 3 of the pairs of lower and middle leaves are fused at the base, appearing to be pierced by the stem.

The inflorescence is a tight cluster of 1 to 4 (usually 3 to 4) flowers in the upper leaf axils.

At the base of the flower are 5 linear, erect sepals. They are uniformly hairy on the back and along the margins, and sometimes also have glandular hairs.

The flowers are to long with 5 maroon, reddish-purple to brown, or yellowish-green petals. The petals are fused into a tubular or bell-shaped floral tube along most of their length. The tube is swollen on one side at the base. The lobes of the tube are unequal in length. The style is longer than and protrudes from the floral tube.

The fruit is berry-like, dull orange-yellow, and hairy. Each fruit contains 3 oblong stones.

 
Similar
Species

Early horse-gentian (Triosteum aurantiacum var. aurantiacum) stems are covered with short hairs that are more than .5 mm long. The leaves do not fuse at the base. The style is shorter than and does not protrude from the floral tube.


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

Comments

 


Taxonomy

Family:

Caprifoliaceae (honeysuckle)

 

Subfamily:

Caprifolioideae

 
Synonyms

 

 
Common
Names

common horsegentian

feverwort

late horse gentian

late horse-gentian

perfoliate horse-gentian

tinker’s-weed

wild coffee

wild-coffee


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glossary

axil

The upper angle where the leaf stalk meets the stem.

 

glandular hairs

Hairs spread over aerial vegetation that secrete essential oils. The oils act to protect against herbivores and pathogens or, when on a flower part, attract pollinators. The hairs have a sticky or oily feel.

 

linear

Long, straight, and narrow, with more or less parallel sides, like a blade of grass.

       

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Uploaded on Aug 22, 2011

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