Gordonia lasianthus (Linnaeus) J. Ellis. Phen: Jul-Sep; Sep-Oct. Hab: Pocosins, bayheads, acidic, organic-rich swamp forests, wet pine savannas, bay forests. Dist: Ne. NC south to s. peninsular FL, west to s. MS (Sorrie & Leonard 1999), a Southeastern Coastal Plain endemic.
ID notes:Trees almost always have a few orange-red leaves at whatever season. The toothed margin immediately separates Gordonia from other "bays": Magnolia and Tamala.
Origin/Endemic status: Endemic
Other Comments: Peat-filled Carolina bays and large peat dome pocosins from se. VA to e. GA typically have Gordonia as an important tree, surpassed in abundance and importance only by Pinus serotina. On deep peats, Gordonia individuals are stunted and reach sizes hardly larger than pocosin shrubs.
Synonymy: = Fl5, FNA8, GW2, K1, K3, K4, RAB, S, WH3