Carya carolinae-septentrionalis (Ashe) Engler & Graebner. Phen: Apr-May; Oct. Hab: Upland flats, especially those weathered from mafic rocks and with shrink-swell soils dominated by montmorillonitic clays, less typically on slopes and bottomlands. Dist: Sc. VA (Halifax County) south to GA, AL, and MS, and inland northward to c. TN and sc. KY. First reported for VA by Wieboldt et al. (1998).
Origin/Endemic status: Endemic
Taxonomy Comments: The taxonomic status of C. carolinae-septentrionalis has been controversial, with some workers reducing it to variety of C. ovata or not recognizing it at all; it seems to us morphologically and ecologically distinctive and to represent an independent evolutionary lineage warranting species rank. Hardin & Stone (1984) found differences in trichomes, and in a study of nut oils, Stone, Adrouny, & Flake (1969) found C. ovata "surprisingly distant" from C. carolinae-septentrionalis. There are reports that the two taxa are also phenologically separated, C. carolinae-septentrionalis leafing out about two weeks earlier than C. ovata, when growing together in the c. Piedmont of NC. Though usually ecologically and/or geographically segregated, the two species sometimes occur together or in close proximity to one another; they maintain their distinctness in such situations.
Synonymy: = C, G, K1, K3, K4, RAB, Tn, Va; = Carya australis Ashe; = Carya ovata (Mill.) K.Koch var. australis (Ashe) Little – FNA3; = Carya ovata (Mill.) K.Koch var. carolinae-septentrionalis (Ashe) Reveal; = Hicoria carolinae-septentrionalis Ashe – S; = n/a – F