Monotropsis odorata Schwein. ex Ell. var. lehmaniae (Burnham) H.A. Ahles

Locations ofMonotropsis odorata Schwein. ex Ell. var. lehmaniae (Burnham) H.A. Ahles in Virginia

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Detail

Family
Ericaceae
Botanical Name
Monotropsis odorata Schwein. ex Ell. var. lehmaniae (Burnham) H.A. Ahles
Common Name
Lehman's Sweet Pinesap
Synonym(s)
Flora of Virginia Name/Status
Monotropsis odorata Schwein. ex Ell.
Comments
The taxonomic status of var. lehmaniae is uncertain. Although FNA does not recognize the variety, there seems to be an undercurrent (in the Southeast, at least) that the jury may still be out. Purported differences are: 1) fall flowering rather than early spring, 2) lavender coloration, and 3) lack of the sweet (cinnamon) scent typical of the spring plants. The relative proportion of calyx to corolla, apparently is not a useful character. In addition, mycologists suspect that var. lehmaniae might have a different fungal associate.

At present, var. lehmaniae is known from only three stations in Virginia. In order to draw attention to the taxonomic question, we tentatively recognize the variety. For those wishing to learn more about these plants, two very interesting articles may be found in Chinquapin 17(3):8-10, 12., Newsletter of the Southern Appalachian Botanical Society.
Habitat
Acidic hardwood forest with Kalmia latifolia understory. Apparently rare; known from a single site in the Ridge and Valley of Pulaski County, a single site on the Northern Blue Ridge in Madison County, and a single site on the Coastal Plain in James City County.
Native Status
Native

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