|Blue Ridge Huckleberry (Gaylussacia orocola) flowering in early June (Transylvania County, NC); adjacent Crackleberries were already in fruit|
Saturday, June 7, 2014
Blue Ridge Huckleberry (Gaylussacia orocola)
Gaylussacia orocola is narrowly endemic to North Carolina, found in only a couple western counties. Like many other rare plants of the region, it inhabits "mountain bogs" one of the rarest habitat types we have. It is a small deciduous shrub that can grow in association with other heaths like Crackleberry (Gaylussacia baccata) and Highbush Blueberry (Vaccinium fuscatum). At the site of these images it grows under a fairly dense shrub layer containing the previously listed species, as well as Mountain Laurel (Kalmia latifolia), Winterberry (Ilex verticellata), American Holly (Ilex opaca), and a scattering of other woody plants.