Kosteletzkya pentacarpos (Linnaeus) Ledebour. Phen: Jul-Oct. Hab: Brackish to freshwater tidal marshes. Dist: NY (Long Island) south to s. FL, west to TX; West Indies (Cuba); also early introduced in Europe, Linnaeus's name based on its occurrence in Venice).
Origin/Endemic status: Native
Taxonomy Comments: Several varieties have often been recognized on the basis of length of hairs and of parts of the flower and inflorescence (see synonymy). While geographic trends are readily apparent, the recognition of infraspecific taxa is made problematic by the non-correlation of various characters. In recent studies, neither Blanchard (2008) nor Alexander (2010) recognize varieties in our flora area. K. smilacifolia A. Gray, of peninsular FL, appears to warrant specific status, as treated by Small (1933). It also appears that the supposedly "Eurasian" K. pentacarpos represents an early introduction of North American Kosteletzkya to the Old World (probably via ship’s ballast) and is conspecific; K. pentacarpos (based on European material) has nomenclatural priority over K. virginica (Blanchard 2008).
Synonymy: = Va, WI; = Hibiscus pentacarpos L.; = Kosteletskya virginica (L.) C.Presl ex A.Gray – RAB, orthographic variant; = Kosteletzkya pentacarpos (L.) Ledeb. var. pentacarpos – K3, K4, NY, Alexander (2010), Weeks (2017b) in Weakley et al (2017); > Kosteletzkya althaeifolia (Chapm.) Rusby – S; < Kosteletzkya pentacarpos (L.) Ledeb. – Fl4, FNA6, WH3, Blanchard (2008); > Kosteletzkya virginica (L.) C.Presl ex A.Gray – GW2, K1, S; > Kosteletzkya virginica (L.) C.Presl ex A.Gray var. althaefolia – Tx, orthographic variant; > Kosteletzkya virginica (L.) C.Presl ex A.Gray var. althaeifolia Chapm. – F, G; > Kosteletzkya virginica (L.) C.Presl ex A.Gray var. aquilonia Fernald – C, F, G; > Kosteletzkya virginica (L.) C.Presl ex A.Gray var. virginica – C, F, G