St. Andrew's Cross
Hypericum hypericoides
Hypericaceae (St, John's Wort) Family

Plant is an upright, smooth perennial shrub with lemon-yellow flowers at the tip of branches. Preferred habitat is swamps, sandy sites and thin woods. Distribution is throughout the Escambia region.

Leaves are small; opposite on the stem; widest at the middle; nearly clasping the stem or may be pronounced.

Flowers are yellow; about 1/4 inch wide; four petals instead of the usual five and the sepals are of unequal size; usually two broad green sepals with the two narrow missing (as with St. Peter’s Wort). Three to four styles and numerous stamens. Flowers occur in the summer.

Fruit is a capsule.

The related H. suffruticosum is similar but has two styles instead of three to four. St. Andrew’s cross is the symbol represented on the Alabama state flag.

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