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Goldenseal, Orangeroot - Hydrastis canadensis


Family: Ranunculaceae - Buttercup family Genus Common Name: Goldenseal Native Status: Native
Hydrastis canadensis - Goldenseal, Orangeroot. Goldenseal has much medicinal usage, and due to the commercial exploitation is becoming rarer. It is listed as Endangered, Threatened, or of Special Concern in 12 of the 27 states in which it is found, including Georgia, where these photos were taken.

Found in:
AL, AR, CT, DE, GA, IA, IL, IN, KS, KY, MA, MD, MI, MN, MO, MS, NC, NJ, NY, OH, PA, TN, VA, VT, WI, WV, GS

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Hydrastis canadensis

Distribution of Hydrastis canadensis in the United States and Canada:
USDA Plants Distribution Map temporarily unavailable.
Blue=Native; Grey=Introduced

Map from USDA Plants Database:
USDA, NRCS. 2017. The PLANTS Database (http://plants.usda.gov, 22 Oct 2017). National Plant Data Team, Greensboro, NC 27401-4901 USA.

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Site: Pigeon Mountain - East, Walker County GA Date: 2010-April-16Photographer: Gerald C. Williamson
The Goldenseal blossom consists of many elongated white stamens which surround numerous (12-15 or more) green pistils. The blossom is held on a stalk above the palmate leaf.

I had previously reported that this photograph is from the only county in Georgia where the plant is found. That was based on the USDA Plants Database distribution maps, and personal discussion with a couple of knowledgeable sources. I have recently (07/03/2011) found references, including online documentation from the Georgia Department of Natural Resources (1995) and the excellent 2007 book Field Guide to the Rare Plants of Georgia by Linda G. Chafin, which indicate that the plant may be found in 10 or 12 locations in the state. You can find links to these sources in the "References" section below.
Hydrastis canadensis

Site: Pigeon Mountain - East, Walker County GA Date: 2011-March-05Photographer: Gerald C Williamson
Click on the photo for a larger image
Hydrastis canadensis

Site: Pigeon Mountain - East, Walker County GA Date: 2010-April-16Photographer: Gerald C Williamson
Nikon D60
Tamron SP 90MM f/2.8 AF MacroFlash: Y
Goldenseal has lobed, toothed leaves which have a wrinkled appearance while flowering.
Click on the photo for a larger image
Hydrastis canadensis

Site: Pigeon Mountain - East, Walker County GA Date: 2011-March-25Photographer: Gerald C Williamson
Nikon D60
Click on the photo for a larger image
Hydrastis canadensis

Site: Pigeon Mountain, Walker County, GA Date: 2011-March-25Photographer: Gerald C Williamson
Click on the photo for a larger image
Hydrastis canadensis

References used for identification and information:

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All content except USDA Plants Database map Copyright Gerald C. Williamson 2017
Photographs Copyright owned by the named photographer