Frasera caroliniensis - Walt.
Carolina Gentian
Other English Common Names: American Columbo
Other Common Names: American columbo
Synonym(s): Swertia caroliniensis (Walt.) Kuntze
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Frasera caroliniensis Walt. (TSN 502651)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.130550
Element Code: PDGEN05030
Informal Taxonomy: Plants, Vascular - Flowering Plants - Gentian Family
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Plantae Anthophyta Dicotyledoneae Gentianales Gentianaceae Frasera
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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: Frasera caroliniensis
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G5
Global Status Last Reviewed: 09Apr1984
Global Status Last Changed: 09Apr1984
Rounded Global Status: G5 - Secure
Nation: United States
National Status: NNR
Nation: Canada
National Status: N2 (14Oct2017)

U.S. & Canada State/Province Status
Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
United States Alabama (S2), Arkansas (SNR), Georgia (S3), Illinois (SNR), Indiana (SNR), Kentucky (S5), Louisiana (SH), Michigan (SNR), Mississippi (S2S3), Missouri (SNR), New York (S2), North Carolina (S2S3), Ohio (SNR), Oklahoma (S1), Pennsylvania (S1), South Carolina (S2), Tennessee (SNR), Wisconsin (SNR)
Canada Ontario (S2)

Other Statuses

Canadian Species at Risk Act (SARA) Schedule 1/Annexe 1 Status: E (13Dec2007)
Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC): Endangered (29Apr2006)
Comments on COSEWIC: Reason for designation: A long-lived perennial with 11 to 12 extant Canadian populations. These are fragmented and restricted geographically to a highly agricultural and urbanized region that is subject to continuing habitat loss and degradation. Populations consist primarily of vegetative rosettes with only a few flowering plants produced in a given year. The spread of invasive plants within its habitat is a major threat to the persistence of the species. Further losses of populations due to site development are anticipated.

Status history: Designated Special Concern in April 1993. Status re-examined and designated Endangered in April 2006.

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent Comments: This plant ranges from Michigan, southern Ontario, and western New York southward to South Carolina and northern Georgia, and westward Illinois, Missouri, eastern Oklahoma, and Louisiana.

Overall Threat Impact Comments: Habitat loss and fragmentation may be impacting some populations and intensive forest management could eliminate the species (Southern Appalachian Species Viability Project 2002).

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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Global Range: This plant ranges from Michigan, southern Ontario, and western New York southward to South Carolina and northern Georgia, and westward Illinois, Missouri, eastern Oklahoma, and Louisiana.

U.S. States and Canadian Provinces

Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
Color legend for Distribution Map

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States AL, AR, GA, IL, IN, KY, LA, MI, MO, MS, NC, NY, OH, OK, PA, SC, TN, WI
Canada ON

Range Map
No map available.


U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
AL Blount (01009), Chilton (01021), Colbert (01033), Franklin (01059), Jackson (01071), Jefferson (01073), Lawrence (01079), Madison (01089)
MS Chickasaw (28017), Clay (28025), Hinds (28049)*, Lee (28081), Lowndes (28087), Madison (28089)*, Monroe (28095), Noxubee (28103), Oktibbeha (28105), Pontotoc (28115), Tishomingo (28141), Union (28145), Winston (28159)
NC Cherokee (37039), Clay (37043), Graham (37075), Macon (37113)
NY Allegany (36003), Erie (36029)*, Genesee (36037), Livingston (36051), Monroe (36055)*, Ontario (36069)*, Wyoming (36121)
OK Le Flore (40079), McCurtain (40089)
PA Butler (42019), Clarion (42031), Forest (42053), Lawrence (42073), Mercer (42085), Venango (42121)
SC Abbeville (45001), Fairfield (45039), Greenwood (45047), Laurens (45059), Newberry (45071)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
03 Lower Broad (03050106)+, Enoree (03050108)+, Saluda (03050109)+, Upper Savannah (03060103)+, Upper Alabama (03150201)+, Cahaba (03150202)+, Upper Tombigbee (03160101)+, Town (03160102)+, Tibbee (03160104)+, Noxubee (03160108)+, Locust (03160111)+, Upper Pearl (03180001)+, Middle Pearl-Strong (03180002)+*
04 Buffalo-Eighteenmile (04120103)+*, Niagara (04120104)+*, Upper Genesee (04130002)+, Lower Genesee (04130003)+, Irondequoit-Ninemile (04140101)+*
05 Middle Allegheny-Tionesta (05010003)+, Clarion (05010005)+, Lower Allegheny (05010009)+, Shenango (05030102)+, Connoquenessing (05030105)+
06 Upper Little Tennessee (06010202)+, Lower Little Tennessee (06010204)+, Hiwassee (06020002)+, Guntersville Lake (06030001)+, Wheeler Lake (06030002)+, Pickwick Lake (06030005)+, Bear (06030006)+
08 Little Tallahatchie (08030201)+, Lower Big Black (08060202)+*
11 Kiamichi (11140105)+, Upper Little (11140107)+, Mountain Fork (11140108)+
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
Ecology & Life History
Help
Basic Description: A large herb with whorled leaves and a showy panicle of yellow-greenish flowers. The fruit is a large flat capsule.
General Description: Green gentian is a monocarpic perennial plant that may live as basal leaves up to 30 years or more. The large basal leaves can grow up to 1 1/2 feet and are lance-shaped and wider towards the tip. The stem leaves are in whorls of four and are progressively smaller towards the top. The flowering stem can grow from 3-6 feet tall and is topped by a large inflorescence with many branches containing 50-100 flowers and fruits. The showy flowers have four greenish-yellow petals that are purple-dotted and about 1/2 to 3/4" long. Below the middle on each petal is a large elliptic gland surrounded by a long fringe. The large fruits, almost an inch long, are elliptic and flattened.
Technical Description: Smooth perennial herb, 1-2 m tall, leaves in whorls of 3-6 (commonly 5's). Lower leaves oblanceolate, veiny, up to 4 dm long, the upper progressively reduced. Inflorescence paniculiform, pyramidal, loosely flowered, the lower branches 5-15 cm long, the lower bracteal leaves up to 10 cm long, the upper branches progressively reduced. Calyx deeply divided into 4-5 segments. Corolla greenish-yellow, dotted with purple, rotate, convolute in bud, the tube short, the ovate-lanceolate lobes bearing a large elliptic gland surrounded by a long fringe. Stamens inserted in the corolla tube, the elongate filaments dilated at the connate base. Ovary ovoid, style elongate, stigma capitate. Capsule elliptic, flat, 1.5-2 cm long.
Diagnostic Characteristics: Leaves simple, whorled on the stem. Corolla rotate, the small tube much shorter than its lobes or the calyx lobes. Flowers yellow-greenish. Style well developed. Corolla lobes bearing a large fringed gland.
Duration: PERENNIAL, Long-lived, DECIDUOUS
Reproduction Comments: n=39 Plants die after flowering and fruiting.
Terrestrial Habitat(s): Forest - Hardwood, Forest - Mixed, Forest/Woodland
Habitat Comments: Upland deciduous forest, particularly near the margins and in clearings.
Economic Attributes
Help
Economic Uses: MEDICINE/DRUG
Economic Comments: Root used as an emetic and cathartic or as tonic.
Management Summary Not yet assessed
Help
Population/Occurrence Delineation Not yet assessed
Help
Population/Occurrence Viability
Help
U.S. Invasive Species Impact Rank (I-Rank) Not yet assessed
Help
Authors/Contributors
Help
Element Ecology & Life History Edition Date: 30Apr1991
Element Ecology & Life History Author(s): ISAAC, J.

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
Help
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  • Bright, JOHN. 1936. "IN QUEST OF THE RARE ONES." TRILLIA,NO. 10. PP 22-27.

  • COSEWIC 2006. COSEWIC assessment and update status report on the American Columbo Frasera caroliniensis in Canada. Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada. Ottawa. vi + 21 pp. (www.sararegistry.gc.ca/status/status_e.cfm).

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  • Crins, W.J. and M.J. Sharp. 1993. Status report on the American Columbo Frasera caroliniensis Walter in Canada. COSEWIC. 20 pp.

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  • Fernald, M.L. 1949. Gray's Manual of Botany, Eighth edition. American Book Co. New York. B49FER01PAUS

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  • Gleason, H.A. 1952. New Britton & Brown. Illustrated Flora. Lancaster Press Inc. Lancaster, Pa. B52GLE01PAUS

  • Gleason, H.A. 1952. The new Britton and Brown illustrated flora of the northeastern United States and adjacent Canada. 3 volumes. Hafner Press, New York. 1732 pp.

  • Gleason, Henry A. and A. Cronquist. 1991. Manual of Vascular Plants of Northeastern United States and Adjacent Canada. The New York Botanical Garden, Bronx, New York. 910 pp.

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  • Horn, Charles N. 1997. An ecological study of Frasera caroliniensis in South Carolina. Castanea 62 (3): 185-193.

  • Kartesz, J. T. 1991. Synonym names from 1991 checklist, as extracted by Larry Morse, TNC, June 1991.

  • 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. 1996. Species distribution data at state and province level for vascular plant taxa of the United States, Canada, and Greenland (accepted records), from unpublished data files at the North Carolina Botanical Garden, December, 1996.

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  • Oldham, M.J. and R. Jones. 2005. COSSARO Candidate Species at Risk Evaluation Form for American Columbo (Frasera caroliniensis). Natural Heritage Information Centre. Prepared for Committee on the Status of Species at Risk in Ontario (COSSARO), Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, Peterborough. 24 October, 12 pp.

  • Pammel, L.H. 1911. Manual of Poisonous Plants, Torch Press, Cedar Rapids, Iowa. B11PAM01PAUS.

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  • Southern Appalachian Species Viability Project. 2002. A partnership between the U.S. Forest Service-Region 8, Natural Heritage Programs in the Southeast, NatureServe, and independent scientists to develop and review data on 1300+ regionally and locally rare species in the Southern Appalachian and Alabama region. Database (Access 97) provided to the U.S. Forest Service by NatureServe, Durham, North Carolina.

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