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Slender Toothwort - Cardamine angustata


Family: Brassicaceae - Mustard family Genus Common Name: Bittercress Native Status: NativeDicot Perennial Herb
Cardamine angustata - Slender Toothwort. Toothworts have previously been classified in the Dentaria genus, but recently, presumably based on DNA testing, have been moved en masse into the Cardamine - bittercress - genus. Many publications still list the plants in Dentaria.

C. agustata - Slender Toothwort - has long-stemmed basal leaves which are broader and more ovate than their single pair of opposing, 3-part stem leaves. The basal leaves are veined (but not as prominently as in C. diphylla) and are toothed. The stem leaves of C. angustata may be toothed or entire. Heterophylla, the species epithet used when this plant was classified in Dentaria, means "different leaves" - either referring to the difference between the stem and basal leaves, or with differences in the appearance of particularly the stem leaves on different plants within the species.

The plant is typically 8 to 16 inches tall. Toothworts grow from a rhizome. One differentiator between C. diphylla and C. angustata is that the rhizome of C. angustata has constrictions forming multiple segments, while the rhizome of C. diphylla is of uniform size. I do not encourage digging up native plants; populations have been lost by that activity.

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Cardamine angustata

Distribution of Cardamine angustata 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, 22 Aug 2017). National Plant Data Team, Greensboro, NC 27401-4901 USA.

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Site: Zahnd's Natural Area (Lower), Walker County, GA Date: 2010-April-04Photographer: Gerald C. Williamson
1/60f/10 ISO100
The flower cluster of Slender Toothwort terminates the stem. The blossoms may be white or pale pink.
Cardamine angustata

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