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Frequent in moist meadows and prairies. Moist wooded floodplains, swamps, marshes.
Apios americana, Calamagrostis canadensis, Thelypteris palustris, Galium obtusum, Impatient capensis, Liatris spicata, Lycopus americanus, Lythrum alatum, Phlox glaberrima interior, Spartina pectinata, Spiraea alba, Thalictrum dasycarpum. On shaded floodplains with Fraxinus americana, Laportea canadensis, Lysimachia ciliata, Rudbeckia laciniata, Sambucus canadensis, Toxicodendron radicans, Ulmus americana
MA and VT west to Ontario and Manitoba, south to MD, KY, and AR.
Herbaceous perennial to 1 m. Leaves opposite, serrate, sessile or with petioles less than 5 mm long, narrowly lanceolate to ovate, the larger ones usually more than 1 cm wide. Stems 4-angled, pubescent or hispid along the angles. Flowers in terminal racemes; calyx with bell-shaped tube and 5 long, deltoid, sharp teeth; corolla pink-purple, united, 2-lipped, upper lip entire, lower lip 3-parted. Ovary deeply 4-lobed. Fruit separating into 4, 1-seeded nutlets.
Flowers late June to mid September
Wetland indicator: Facultative Wetland +
The plants shown here and the descriptions apply to var. hispida (Pursh) Fern. Some authorities promote this to the species S. hispida Pursh.
Typical S. tenuifolia (Smooth Hedge Nettle) has smooth calyx lobes, and mostly glabrous upper leaf surfaces. It occurs on moist, shaded soil from NY west to MI and MN, south to SC and TX. Intermediate specimens occur northward.
Crow, Garrett E and C. Barre Hellquist. 2000. Aquatic and Wetland Plants of
Northeastern North America
Vol. 1. Pteridophytes, Gymnosperms, and Angiosperms: Dicotyledons
The University of Wisconsin Press. Madison, WI
Gleason, Henry A. and A. Cronquist. 1991. Manual of Vascular Plants of
Northeastern United States
and Adjacent Canada. Second Ed.
The New York Botanical Garden. Bronx, NY
Swink, F. and G. Wilhelm. 1994. Plants of the Chicago Region.
Indiana Academy of Science. The Morton Arboretum. Lisle, Illinois.
Michael Hough © 2005