Feb. 3, 2018

lopseed, Phryma leptostachya

Lopseed occurs in eastern North America and California. At first glance, one would be tempted to think the California plants are escapes from cultivation. Then you learn that it grows naturally in Japan and the Himalayan region of India, Nepal and Pakistan. So who knows about California? There are about 65 genera of plants with American and East Asian distributions. Geographic, fossil and molecular evidence suggests these plants lived in temperate forests in the Tertiary period (65 million or more years ago), before our current stage of continental drift. The disjunct distributions would have been established during the Miocene period, 23 million or more years ago. Lopseed's quarter inch flowers currently grow in forests in AL, AR, CA, CT, DE, FL, GA, IA, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME(X), MI, MN, MO, MS, NC, ND, NE, NH, NJ, NY, OH, OK, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, VA, VT, WI, WV, WY, MB, NB, ON, and QC. Lenawee Co MI, 7/22/16.