E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia

Steironema ciliatum (L.) Baudo
American loosestrife (fringed loosestrife)
Myrsinaceae (Myrsine family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Jim Riley  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #28548)

E-Flora BC Static Map
Distribution of Steironema ciliatum
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Species Information

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General:
Stems erect, solitary, from creeping rhizomes, simple or sometimes branched, not dark-spotted, glabrous, 20-130 cm tall.
Leaves:
Leaves opposite, long-stalked, ovate to broadly-lanceolate, apices acute to acuminate, bases rounded to cordate, entire, surfaces glabrous, margins ciliate (cilia to 2 mm), 4-17 (20) mm; petiole 0.5-6 cm.
Flowers:
. Inflorescences of solitary, axillary flowers in axils of upper leaves Flowers long-stalked; corollas rotate, 5-lobed, 5-12 mm wide; corolla lobes yellow, sometimes with a reddish base, not streaked or spotted, apices mucronate, margins sometimes slightly erose; calyces green, not streaked, 2.5-9 mm, sometimes stipitate-glandular; calyx lobes lanceolate filaments partly connate, shorter than the corollas; pedicels slender, arched, usually stipitate-glandular, (0.5) 1.5-7 cm. Flowering (Jun) Jul-Sep.
Fruits:
Capsules glabrous, 5-7 mm.

Source: The Vascular Flora of British Columbia, draft 2014.
Author: Jamie Fenneman

Habitat / Range

Moist to wet streambanks, shorelines, meadows, riparian woods, boggy wetlands, and pond edges in the lowland, steppe, and montane zones. Frequent in sc and se BC, locally infrequent in sw BC (Lower Fraser Valley); BC east to NS, south to NM, FL.

Source: The Vascular Flora of British Columbia, draft 2014.
Author: Jamie Fenneman

Additional Notes

Populations in the Lower Fraser Valley are disjunct from the remainder of the species’ distribution in the province, which is otherwise centred in the southern interior. Distribution maps in Coffey and Jones (1980) apparently greatly overstate the extent of the species’ distribution in northwestern North America, erroneously attributing S. ciliatum to northern and central British Columbia and even Alaska.

Source: The Vascular Flora of British Columbia, draft 2014
Author: Jamie Fenneman

Family Information

Annual or perennial herbs from fibrous roots, a taproot, a horizontal rhizome, or a small tuber (or a greatly enlarged tuber in Cyclamen); plants often with secretory resin canals that appear as dark dots or streaks. Stems trailing to erect, solitary to several, branched or simple. Leaves generally cauline (all basal in Cyclamen), alternate or opposite (sometimes whorled or pseudowhorled). Inflorescences variable, ranging from solitary axillary flowers or axillary whorls to stalked axillary racemes, terminal or axillary panicles, or erect terminal racemes. Flowers bisexual, usually stalked; corollas usually radially symmetric (sometimes lacking), rotate or campanulate to funneliform, (4-) 5- to 9-lobed; calyces (4-) 5- to 9-lobed; stamens (4-) 5-9; filaments distinct or connate; ovary superior; styles 1. Fruit a capsule, valvate or circumcissile; seeds usually brown or reddish-brown to black. Genera ~50, species ~1400 (5 genera, 12 species in B.C.). Nearly worldwide, except absent from many deserts and polar regions.

The genera here were all formerly included within a broadly-defined Primulaceae, but have since been moved to the closely related Myrsinaceae following recent molecular-genetic studies that have shown strong support for their inclusion in the latter family (Källersjö et al. 2000, Trift et al. 2002, Cholewa et al. 2009). All genera in B.C., with the exception of the genus Cyclamen, are apparently derived from within the large, highly paraphyletic genus Lysimachia (Hao et al. 2004, Anderberg et al. 2007), at least in its broadest sense, and some authors prefer to treat some or all of these genera as members of that genus so as to preserve its monophyly; however, most published phylogenies of the group (e.g., Hao et al. 2004, Manns and Anderberg 2005, Anderberg et al. 2007) suggest that it consists of a number of well-supported individual clades that might be better recognized as genera. Although such an approach would result in the redistribution of some Lysimachia species into new genera, it seems to best represent the systematics of the group and, as a result, it is the approach that is followed in this treatment (i.e., recognition of Steironema, Anagallis, and Trientalis as separate from Lysimachia). Several species of Cyclamen and Lysimachia are grown as ornamentals in southern British Columbia, including the naturalized species Cyclamen hederifolium, Lysimachia punctata, L. nummularia, and L. vulgaris.

Key to the Genera of Myrsinaceae

1a. Corolla lobes sharply reflexed; plants scapose, from a greatly enlarged, round, flattened tuber; leaves all basal, arising directly from the tuber………………………………………………………………………………………………..Cyclamen

1b. Corollas usually rotate or campanulate to funneliform, but corolla lobes never sharply reflexed; plants not scapose, from fibrous roots, short rhizomes, or small, slightly enlarged, ascending or horizontal tubers; leaves all cauline……………..……...........2

2a. Plants annual (rarely perennial); fibrous-rooted to taprooted…………….……………………………...………..….....…Anagallis

2b. Plants perennial; from rhizome or a small, slightly thickened, horizontal to ascending tuber…………...…………………...........….4

4a. Corollas yellow……..……………………………………………...……………………………………………..…………5

5a. Flowers solitary, axillary; stems erect; leaves ovate to broadly lanceolate…………………..…………….....….Steironema

5b. Flowers usually in terminal or axillary racemes or axillary whorls, if solitary and axillary then stems creeping and leaves nearly orbicular……………………………………………………………………………………..……Lysimachia (in part)

4b. Corollas whitish to pinkish, or corollas absent and calyces instead corolla-like and whitish or pinkish…...………….…..…......6

6a. Plants succulent, glaucous; leaves distributed throughout the stems; flowers sessile; corollas absent; calyx lobes whitish or pinkish, corolla-like; plants restricted to saline or alkaline habitats…….…….…….…………...……...Lysimachia (in part)

6b. Plants not succulent, not glaucous; leaves mostly in a single pseudowhorl at top of the stem (stem leaves reduced or scale-like); flowers long-stalked; corollas present; calyces green, not corolla like; plants widespread in terrestrial and some wetland habitats, but never associated with saline or alkaline habitats……………………...……………………..Trientalis


Source: The Vascular Flora of British Columbia, draft 2014.
Author: Jamie Fenneman

Genus Information

This small genus, which reaches its greatest diversity in the eastern United States, is resurrected here to encompass species that were formerly placed in Lysimachia subg. Seleucia. Members of Steironema are apparently only distantly related to Lysimachia s.s., and its recognition is required in order for the genus Lysimachia to remain monophyletic with the recognition of Trientalis (Hao et al. 2004, Manns and Anderberg 2005, Anderberg et al. 2007). 7-8 spp. (1 sp. in B.C.). North America.

Source: The Vascular Flora of British Columbia, draft 2014.
Author: Jamie Fenneman

Synonyms and Alternate Names

Lysimachia ciliata L.

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

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