(Pyxidanthera barbulata) Diapensia family

Flowers - Abundant, white, or sometimes pink, about 1/4 in.

across, 5-parted, solitary, seated at tips of branches. Stem:

Prostrate, creeping, much branched, the main branches often 1 ft.

long, very leafy, growing in mat-like patches. Leaves: Moss-like,

very narrow, pointed, seated on stem, and overlapping like

scales, on upper part of branches.

Preferred Habitat - Dry sandy soil; pine barrens.

Flowering Season - March-May.

Distribution - New Jersey, south to North Carolina.

Curiously enough, this creeping, tufted, mat-like little plant is

botanically known as a shrub, yet it is lower than many mosses,

and would seem to the untrained eye to be certainly of their kin.

In earliest spring, when Lenten penitents, jaded with the

winter's frivolities in the large cities, seek the salubrious

pine lands of southern New Jersey and beyond, they are amazed and

delighted to find the abundant little evergreen mounds of pyxie

already starred with blossoms. The dense mossy cushions,

plentifully sprinkled with pink buds and white flowers, are so

beautiful, one cannot resist taking a few tuffets home to

naturalize in the rock garden. Planted in a mixture of clear sand

and leaf-mould, with exposure to the morning sun, pyxie will

smile up at us from under our very windows, spring after spring,

with increased charms; whereas the arbutus, that untamable

wildling, carried home from the pinewoods at the same time, soon

sulks itself to death.

PURPLEFLOWERING OR VIRGINIA RASPBERRY QUEENOFTHEPRAIRIE facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail