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Spotted St. Johnswort, Black Dotted St. Johnswort - Hypericum punctatum


Family: Hypericaceae - St. John's Wort Family Genus Common Name: St. John's Wort Native Status: Native
Hypericum punctatum - Spotted St. Johnswort, Black Dotted St. Johnswort. Found throughout the eastern United States as far west as Texas and Minnesota, this plant is easy to confuse with Common St. Johnswort (Hypericum perforatum,) which has larger flowers, smaller leaves, and leaf dots that are more translucent than those of H. punctatum. H. punctatum also has dots covering more of the petals and sepals. The smaller stems of H. perforatum are also strongly angled and may have small wings on the angles.

Found in:
AL, AR, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, IA, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MS, NC, NE, NH, NJ, NY, OH, OK, PA, RI, SC, TN, TX, VA, VT, WI, WV

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Hypericum punctatum

Distribution of Hypericum punctatum in the United States and Canada:
USDA Plants Distribution Map temporarily unavailable.
Blue=Native; Grey=Introduced

Map from USDA Plants Database:
USDA, NRCS. 2009. The PLANTS Database (http://plants.usda.gov, 29 Mar 2017). National Plant Data Center, Baton Rouge, LA 70874-4490 USA.

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Site: Lula Lake, Walker County, Ga Date: 2013-August-03Photographer: Gerald C. Williamson
Nikon D7000
Tamron SP 90MM f/2.8 AF Macro
As with several St. Johnswort species, Spotted St. Johnswort has 5 bright yellow petals with many stamens surrounding a central green pistil. The stamens are joined at the base into 3 or 5 fascicles, a characteristic shared with a half-dozen or so Hypericum species. The petals are black-spotted throughout much or all of the petal (Hypericum perforatum only near the margins) and the sepals are also covered with black dots or lines.
Hypericum punctatum

Site: Lula Lake, Walker County, Ga Date: 2013-August-03Photographer: Gerald C Williamson
Nikon D7000
The flowers are in dense clusters terminating the stems and branches of the plant.
Click on the photo for a larger image
Hypericum punctatum

Site: Lula Lake, Walker County, Ga Date: 2013-August-03Photographer: Gerald C Williamson
Nikon D7000
Spotted St. Johnswort (or St. Johnís Wort) grows up to over 3 feet tall. It will branch occasionally in the upper part of the plant.
Click on the photo for a larger image
Hypericum punctatum

Site: Lula Lake, Walker County, Ga Date: 2013-August-03Photographer: Gerald C Williamson
Nikon D7000
The leaves are opposite, sessile or occasionally short-petioled with multiple prominent veins, oblong to ovate, and heavily dotted with spots, which are darker on the newer leaves. The leaves are up to about 2.75 inches long. They are blunt-tipped, unlike the similar dotted St. Johnswort - Hypericum pseudomaculatum (False Spotted St. Johnswort.)
Click on the photo for a larger image
Hypericum punctatum

References used for identification and information:

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All content except USDA Plants Database map Copyright Gerald C. Williamson 2017
Photographs Copyright owned by the named photographer