Paronychia virginica Spreng. var. virginica

Locations ofParonychia virginica Spreng.  var. virginica in Virginia

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Botanical Name
Paronychia virginica Spreng. var. virginica
Common Name
Yellow Nailwort
Flora of Virginia Name/Status
Paronychia virginica Spreng. var virginica
While FNA treats Paronychia virginica broadly without formal infraspecific segregates, Flora of the of Southeastern U.S. recognizes P. virginica var. scoparia (Small) Cory of s. MO, AR, TX, and n. Mexico as a species (P. scoparia) disjunct from eastern P. virginica (MD and WVA to GA and Al). Rohrer (1997, M.S. Thesis, VPI) proposed subspecies ranks because allozyme data was not as distinctive as morphology, but the combinations were never published. The two taxa differ morphologically in gradational pubescence and overlapping differences in awn length. They clearly merit distinction at some taxonomic level, especially with the disjunct ranges, although some of Rohrer’s Virginia specimens “approach” var. scoparia (T.F. Wieboldt, pers. comm.). However, we consider the issue unsettled and in need of additional, modern phylogenetic study, and will follow the conservative course of recognizing eastern plants as var. virginica until such a study is conducted.
Shale barrens and cliffs. Rare, mountains (Ridge and Valley province); known from four counties in wc. and sw. Virginia. The Arlington Co. record is ambiguous, and may be erroneously based on a collection from the MD-DC side of the Potomac River Gorge, where it occurs on flood-scoured, riverside outcrops.
Native Status

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