|Range within North America|
Persicaria virginiana, also called jumpseed, Virginia knotweed or woodland knotweed is a North American species of smartweed within the buckwheat family. It is unusual as a shade-tolerant member of a mostly sun-loving genus. Jumpseed is a perennial, named for its seeds which can "jump" several feet when a ripe seedpod is disturbed.
Persicaria virginiana blooms in midsummer to late summer/early fall. It has a stalk of small white flowers.
Like other Persicaria, jumpseed has alternate leaves, with fine-hairy stipular sheaths (ocrea) with bristle-fringed edges which often turn brownish. Flowers, widely spaced along slender stalks, are white to greenish-white, rarely pink-tinged, and fruiting flowers have 2 downward-pointing hook-tipped styles. Persicaria virginiana is easily distinguished from most other Persicaria species by its much larger, more oval-shaped leaves, although a few species also have large leaves. It sometimes has a chevron-shaped marking on the leaves; often a single plant will have this marking on some leaves but not others.
Cultivars and naturalized populations from cultivation show much greater variation than wild-type plants, sometimes having variegation or have more involved red patterning, and sometimes having red or pink flowers.
Distribution and habitat
It naturally occurs in full to partial shade, on riverbanks, woods, cliffs, and rocks.
Many variegated cultivars exist. The plant prefers medium to moist soil and full sun to part shade.
- "Persicaria virginiana (L.) Gaertn.", Tropicos, Missouri Botanical Garden
- "Persicaria virginiana", Natural Resources Conservation Service PLANTS Database. USDA, retrieved 12 October 2015
- David M., Brandenburg (2010), National Wildlife Federation Field Guide to Wildflowers of North America, New York: Sterling Publishing, p. 432, ISBN 978-1402741548
- Hinds, Harold R.; Freeman, Craig C. (2005), "Persicaria virginiana", in Flora of North America Editorial Committee (ed.), Flora of North America North of Mexico (FNA), 5, New York and Oxford – via eFloras.org, Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA
- "Persicaria virginiana", County-level distribution map from the North American Plant Atlas (NAPA), Biota of North America Program (BONAP), 2014
- "Persicaria virginiana", Plants of Wisconsin, University of Wisconsin–Stevens Point, Robert W. Freckmann Herbarium, archived from the original on 2013-05-30
- "Persicaria virginiana (Variegata Group)", Plant Finder, Missouri Botanical Garden
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