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Appalachian Rose Gentian, Cumberland Rose Gentian - Sabatia capitata


Family: Gentianaceae - Gentian family Genus Common Name: Rose Gentian Native Status: NativeDicot Annual Biennial Herb
Sabatia capitata - Appalachian Rose Gentian, Cumberland Rose Gentian. Recorded as found in only 4 states (AL, GA, NC, TN), Sabatia capitata is legally protected, listed as Rare in Georgia, where it is known in 7 counties, and listed as Endangered in Tennessee, where it is known only in 2 counties Hamilton and Sequatchie. It is listed as "S2" - some level of endangered - in Alabama. The research that I've done so far implies that it is likely extinct in North Carolina.

Found in:
AL, GA, NC, TN

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Sabatia capitata

Distribution of Sabatia capitata 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, 26 May 2017). National Plant Data Team, Greensboro, NC 27401-4901 USA.

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Site: Cloudland Canyon State Park, Dade County, GA Date: 2010-July-05Photographer: Gerald C. Williamson
Appalachian Rose Gentian has 7 to 12 pink (rarely white) petals, that are .5 to 1 inch long. The petals have a yellow base (in this new blossom, yellowish-green.) They are borne in tight clusters terminating the stem, or at the upper leaf axils. In this photo, you can see a pair of unopened flowers peeking from behind the petals of the open flower.
Sabatia capitata

Site: Cloudland Canyon State Park, Dade County, GA Date: 2013-July-16Photographer: Gerald C Williamson
Nikon D7000
Tamron SP 90MM f/2.8 AF Macro
Sabatia capitata more frequently has 8 petals, but may have 7 to 12. It is the only Sabatia in its range with other than 5 petals. While the yellow or green center "star" is frequently surrounded by a red highlight, in some cases that is absent or quite faint as in the case of this photo. Sometimes a border of white is more apparent.
Click on the photo for a larger image
Sabatia capitata

Site: Cloudland Canyon State Park, Dade County, GA Date: 2010-July-05Photographer: Gerald C Williamson
Nikon D60
Tamron SP 90MM f/2.8 AF Macro
Appalachian Rose Gentian grows to about 2 feet tall with terminal flower clusters, and flower clusters in some of the upper leaf axils.
Click on the photo for a larger image
Sabatia capitata

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