Spigelia marilandica - (L.) L.
Woodland Pinkroot
Other Common Names: woodland pinkroot
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Spigelia marilandica (L.) L. (TSN 505330)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.159730
Element Code: PDLOG08050
Informal Taxonomy: Plants, Vascular - Flowering Plants - Pinkroot Family
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Plantae Anthophyta Dicotyledoneae Gentianales Loganiaceae Spigelia
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Concept Reference
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Concept Reference: Kartesz, J.T. 1994. A synonymized checklist of the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. 2nd edition. 2 vols. Timber Press, Portland, OR.
Concept Reference Code: B94KAR01HQUS
Name Used in Concept Reference: Spigelia marilandica
Taxonomic Comments: Despite the name "marilandica" it is questionable whether this species occurs (or occurred) in Maryland. LEM 24Jan01.
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G4
Global Status Last Reviewed: 31Jan2001
Global Status Last Changed: 02Feb2001
Rounded Global Status: G4 - Apparently Secure
Reasons: Spigelia marilandica occurs from Texas and Florida, north to Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, and Virginia and perhaps Maryland. It is widespread, but rare to significantly rare in the more northern portions of the range including the Midwest, but common in Arkansas. This showy plant is cultivated for ornamental use but roots are also collected from the wild for medicinal purposes; wild-collection for this purpose may have reduced populations in the eastern U.S. Demand for this species has historically been higher than current demand, which is relatively limited. S. marilandica is potentially threatened by clearcutting due to habitat requirements.
Nation: United States
National Status: N4

U.S. & Canada State/Province Status
United States Alabama (SNR), Arkansas (SNR), Florida (SNR), Georgia (SNR), Illinois (SNR), Indiana (S1), Kentucky (S5), Louisiana (SNR), Mississippi (SNR), Missouri (SNR), North Carolina (S1), Oklahoma (S4?), South Carolina (SNR), Tennessee (SNR), Texas (SNR), Virginia (SNR)

Other Statuses

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent Comments: Spigelia marilandica occurs from Texas and Florida, north to Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, and Virginia and perhaps Maryland. Also grows in Arkansas, Tennessee, and Indiana.

Population Size Comments: Widespread; abundance is variable across its range. This species is not common in Oklahoma and is occasional in Kentucky (pers. comm. J. Nelson, October 2000, pers. comm. D. White, October 2000). S. marilandica is common in South Carolina, occurs in one county in southwestern North Carolina and probably occurs in southwestern Virginia (Weakley 2000 Draft). In Mississippi it grows throughout the state, except in the delta. The same is true in Louisiana. Georgia populations are concentrated in the north-northwest part of the state.

Overall Threat Impact Comments: Spigelia marilandica has historically been used for medicinal purposes and its roots are still in commerce. Historically, collecting roots for medicinal purposes may have reduced populations in the eastern part of the U.S. (pers. comm. D. Winston, October 2000). It is included on the United Plant Savers' "To Watch List", indicating that wild populations are potentially threatened, due either to market demand or ecological threats. Spigelia marilandica is an ornamental plant and widely cultivated, though it is not clear whether roots used in the herbal industry are cultivated and wild-collected. It is reportedly "showy and very attractive" and potentially prone to over-collection, though this is somewhat speculative (pers. comm. J. Nelson, October 2000). According to Michael McGuffin, president of the American Herbal Products Association, it has very limited contemporary use and is available as a homeopathic remedy (pers. comm., December 2000).

This species is probably threatened by clearcutting since it grows in heavily shaded, mesic forests (D. White, pers. comm. November 2000).

Short-term Trend Comments: Apparently relatively stable; no population inventories reporting major decline; however some experts in the medicinal plant industry have suggested that populations and species have declined over the past ten years (Robbins 1999).

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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Global Range: Spigelia marilandica occurs from Texas and Florida, north to Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, and Virginia and perhaps Maryland. Also grows in Arkansas, Tennessee, and Indiana.

U.S. States and Canadian Provinces
Color legend for Distribution Map

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States AL, AR, FL, GA, IL, IN, KY, LA, MO, MS, NC, OK, SC, TN, TX, VA

Range Map
No map available.


U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
IN Posey (18129)
NC Cherokee (37039)
OK LeFlore (40079), McCurtain (40089)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
05 Lower Wabash (05120113)+, Highland-Pigeon (05140202)+
06 Hiwassee (06020002)+
11 Mountain Fork (11140108)+
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
Ecology & Life History
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Basic Description: Herbaceous perennial plant with opposite, lanceolate leaves. An erect herb reaching 1.5 to 1.7 dm tall, S. marilandica has scarlet tubular flowers (5-petaled) that are cream yellow inside (Foster and Duke 1990).
Technical Description: Erect, perennial herb, 1.5-7 dm tall; stems with 4-7 pairs of leaves. Leaves opposite, ovate to lanceaolate, 5-12 cm long, 1.5-6 cm wide, acute to acuminate, entire, base rounded to widely cuneate, pubescent on the veins or glabrate, sessile or very short flowers 2-12 on each branch. Sepals 5, separate to the base, linear, 3-12 mm long, tapered from the base to the apex; corolla actinomorphic, 5-lobed, scarlet on the outside, greenish yellow within, the tube 3-4.5 cm long, lobes erect to spreading, narrowly triangular-lanceolate, 0.5-1.5 cm long; stamens 5, exerted, attached to crorolla tube about half the distance from the base; stigma conical, style slender, equal or to 1 cm longer than the corolla. Capsule turgid, 4-6 mm long, 6-10 mm broad; seeds blackish brown, irregularly angled, the surface lobulate, lobes pitted; 2-2.5 mm long (Radford et al. 1968).
Diagnostic Characteristics: Scarlet flowers distinguish this species from other Spigelia species.
Habitat Comments: This species is a rich forest understory plant; however it is also capable of growing in full sun, and may be found in canopy gaps and along paths and other corridors (Radford et al. 1968, Fischer 1996).
Economic Attributes
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Economically Important Genus: Y
Economic Uses: MEDICINE/DRUG, Cultivated ornamental, Showy wildflower
Production Method: Cultivated, Wild-harvested
Management Summary Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Delineation Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Viability
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U.S. Invasive Species Impact Rank (I-Rank) Not yet assessed
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Authors/Contributors
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NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Edition Date: 31Jan2001
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: K.McConnell
Element Ecology & Life History Edition Date: 31Jan2001
Element Ecology & Life History Author(s): K.MCCONNELL

Botanical data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs), The North Carolina Botanical Garden, and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).

References
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  • Fischer, T. 1996. Indian Pink Spigelia marilandica. Horticulture 74:104

  • Foster, S. and J. Duke. 2000. A Field Guide to Medicinal Plants and Herbs of Eastern and Central North America. Second edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, New York.

  • Kartesz, J.T. 1994. A synonymized checklist of the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. 2nd edition. 2 vols. Timber Press, Portland, OR.

  • Kartesz, J.T. 1999. A synonymized checklist and atlas with biological attributes for the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. First edition. In: Kartesz, J.T., and C.A. Meacham. Synthesis of the North American Flora, Version 1.0. North Carolina Botanical Garden, Chapel Hill, N.C.

  • Radford, A.E., H.E. Ahles, and C.R. Bell. 1968. Manual of the vascular flora of the Carolinas. Univ. North Carolina Press, Chapel Hill, NC. 1183 pp.

  • Robbins, C. 1999. Medicine from US wildlands: An assessment of native plant species harvested in the United States for medicinal use and trade and evaluation of the conservation and management implications. Traffic North America. Prepared for The Nature Conservancy, Arlington, VA. Available at http://www.nps.gov/plants/medicinal/.

  • Weakley, A.S. 2000. Flora of the Carolinas and Virginia: working draft of May 15, 2000. Unpublished draft, The Nature Conservancy, Southern Resource Office.

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