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Mountain Myrtle, Sand Myrtle - Kalmia buxifolia

Family: Ericaceae - Heath family Genus Common Name: Laurel Native Status: NativeDicot Perennial Subshrub Shrub
Kalmia buxifolia - Mountain Myrtle, Sand Myrtle. Kalmia buxifolia was formerly classified as Leiophyllum buxifolium. Based on molecular and morphological studies published in 1996 (Kron and King) and 2002 (Kron et al) it was reclassified into the Kalmia genus. This seems odd to me since they don't appear to be similar at all (especially since I only know Kalmia from Mountain Laurel - Kalmia latifolia.) However, since Weakley has accepted it who am I to argue? Among the similarities are the poisonous nature of the leaves and wood of all species now in the Kalmia genus. (The monotypic genus Loiseleuria was also rolled into Kalmia.)

Kalmia buxifolia features tiny blossoms atop branches with tiny succulent leaves.

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Kalmia buxifolia

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

Map from USDA Plants Database:
USDA, NRCS. 2017. The PLANTS Database (http://plants.usda.gov, 25 Feb 2018). National Plant Data Team, Greensboro, NC 27401-4901 USA.

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Site: GSMNP - Alum Cave Trail Date: 2004-November-05Photographer: Gerald C Williamson
Lovely flower - a treat blooming in November.
Kalmia buxifolia

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All content except USDA Plants Database map Copyright Gerald C. Williamson 2018
Photographs Copyright owned by the named photographer