Chelone glabra

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White turtlehead
Chelone glabra Red River Gorge.JPG
Flowers

Secure (NatureServe)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Lamiales
Family: Plantaginaceae
Genus: Chelone
Species: C. glabra
Binomial name
Chelone glabra
L.

Chelone glabra (white turtlehead) is an herbaceous species of plant native to North America. Its native range extends from Georgia to Newfoundland and Labrador and from Mississippi to Manitoba.[1] Its natural habitat is wet areas, such as riparian forests and swamps.[2][3]

Its classification at the family level has in the past been controversial,[4] but as a result of DNA sequence studies, it is now regarded as belonging to family Plantaginaceae (the plantain family).[5]

Description and Ecology[edit]

Chelone-glabra.jpg

This species has opposite, simple leaves, on stout, upright stems. The flowers are white, borne in late summer and early fall.

It is the primary plant on which the Baltimore checkerspot butterfly will lay its eggs (although the butterfly to some extent will use a few other species).[6][7]

Chelone glabra is a popular browse plant for deer.[3] It is also a foodplant for the sawflies Macrophya nigra and Tenthredo grandis (Hymenoptera: Tenthredinidae),[8] and a flea beetle in the genus Dibolia (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) has also been shown to feed on it.[9]

Uses[edit]

It has been used as a method of birth control by Abenaki people.[10][unreliable source?]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Chelone glabra". PLANTS. 
  2. ^ "Flora of the Southern and Mid-Atlantic States". 
  3. ^ a b Williams, C (2000). "Use of turtlehead (Chelone glabra L.) and other herbaceous plants to assess intensity of white-tailed deer browsing on Allegheny Plateau riparian forests, USA" (PDF). Biological Conservation. 92 (2): 207. doi:10.1016/S0006-3207(99)00054-3. 
  4. ^ http://vnps.org/princewilliamwildflowersociety/changes-in-taxonomy-of-chelone-glabra-and-the-traditional-scrophulariaceae-figwort-family/
  5. ^ http://www.amjbot.org/content/92/2/297.full
  6. ^ M. Deane Bowers, Nancy E. Stamp and Sharon K. Collinge (April 1992). "Early Stage of Host Range Expansion by a Specialist Herbivore, Euphydryas Phaeton (Nymphalidae)". Ecology. Ecological Society of America. 73 (2): 526–536. doi:10.2307/1940758. JSTOR 1940758. 
  7. ^ Euphydryas phaeton (Drury, 1773), Butterflies and Moths of North America
  8. ^ Stamp, N.E. (1984). Effect of defoliation by checkerspot caterpillars (Euphydryas phaeton) and sawfly larvae (Macrophya nigra and Tenthredo grandis) on their host plants (Chelone spp.). Oecologia 63:275–280.
  9. ^ Wilcox, J.A. (1979). Leaf beetle host plants in northeastern North America. World Natural History Publications, Kinderhook, NY.
  10. ^ "Plants Native to the State of Maine". 

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]