A deciduous, much-branched shrub of rounded habit, about 4 ft high, often rising on a single stem from which the lower branches have fallen, thus giving it the aspect of a miniature tree; the older branches covered with a greyish brown, peeling bark; young shoots two-winged. Leaves blue-green, oblong, 1 to 2 in. long, with a minute, abrupt point, and numerous transparent glands. Flowers in clusters terminating the shoot and its upper branches, orange-yellow, 11⁄2 in. across, the stamens forming a dense brush 3⁄4 in. across. The fruit is a three-celled, broad-based cone 1⁄2 in. high, with the very large, leaflike, unequal sepals at the base. Bot. Mag., t. 8498.
Discovered by Bartram in 1776 ‘upon the steep dry banks of the Patse-Lega Creek, a branch of the Flint River’, Georgia, this hypericum, despite its great beauty, does not appear to have reached this country until late in the 19th century. Healthy plants flower and set their fruit in extraordinary abundance, and it is wise to remove the latter except such as may be required for seed. It appears to prefer rocky places in its native home, and is often found on the cliffs of river-courses where it gets some shade. It is wild in several of the south-eastern United States, and is the handsomest of all the American species in cultivation here.