Sabatia angularis (L.) Pursh


Sabatia angularis plant

Family - Gentianaceae

Stems - To +60cm tall, branching above, herbaceous, erect, glabrous, 4-angled, winged on angles, from thickened roots.

Leaves - Opposite, sessile, clasping, ovate, entire, acute, glabrous, decussate, reduced upward, to +4cm long, +3cm broad, with 3 conspicuous veins and 4 faint veins (best seen from below).

Sabatia angularis leaves

Inflorescence - Typically flat-topped cymes with many flowers, dichotomously branching. Each division of inflorescence subtended by small foliaceous bracts.

Flowers - Corolla tube greenish, 4mm long, glabrous, 5-lobed. Lobes spreading, pink or white, to 1.3cm long, +/-6mm broad, oblanceolate to spatulate, glabrous, greenish-yellow at very base. Stamens 5, alternating with corolla lobes, erect. Filaments to 5mm long, glabrous, yellowish. Anthers curling, 3mm long, brownish. Style 6mm long, glabrous, whitish to pale yellow. Stigma 2-lobed. Lobes curled, yellow. Ovary superior, unilocular. Placentation parietal. Calyx tube 1.5mm long(in flower), green, glabrous, 5-lobed. Lobes linear, 8-9mm long, 1mm broad, glabrous, ascending to erect, acute, entire. Calyx accrescent. Capsule to 8mm long, cylindric, glabrous, green, many seeded.

Sabatia angularis calyxCalyx.

Sabatia angularis flower

Flowering - June - September.

Habitat - Rocky open woods, glades, thickets, fields, prairies, roadsides.

Origin - Native to U.S.

Other info. - This plant is common in the southeast 2/3 of the state. It is easy to ID in the field. There are two forms in Missouri. Form angularis has pink flowers. Form albiflora (Raf.) House has white flowers and is slightly less common.
The species is quite attractive and should be cultivated more.

Photographs taken at Taberville Prairie, St. Clair County, MO., 7-27-00, and at the Current River Conservation Area, Reynolds County, MO., 7-15-01.