This section is from the book "An Illustrated Flora Of The Northern United States, Canada And The British Possessions Vol3", by Nathaniel Lord Britton, Addison Brown. Also available from Amazon: An Illustrated Flora of the Northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. 3 Volume Set..
Perennial stout hispid or hirsute branching herbs, with alternate entire strongly Veined leaves, and rather small yellowish or greenish white proterogynous flowers, in terminal leafy-bracted scorpioid spikes or racemes. Calyx deeply 5-parted, the segments narrow. Corolla tubular or tubular-funnel form, 5-lobed, the lobes erect, the throat not appendaged, the sinuses slightly inflexed, the tube with a glandular 10-lobed band within at the base. Stamens 5, inserted on the tube or throat of the corolla, included; filaments short. Ovary 4-parted; style filiform, exserted. Nutlets 4, or commonly only 1 or 2 perfecting, ovoid, sometimes sparingly pitted, shining, smooth, white, attached by the base to the nearly flat receptacle, the scar of attachment small, flat. [Greek, like onosma, or ass-smell.]
About 10 species, natives of North America and Mexico. Besides the following, 3 others occur in the southern and southwestern United States. Type species: Onosmodium hispidum Michx.
Corolla-lobes 2-3 times as long as wide.
1. O. virginianum.
Corolla-lobes scarcely longer than wide. Stem glabrous below.
2. O. subsetosum.
Stem hirsute or pubescent to the base.
Pubescence silky; nutlets distinctly pitted.
3. O. molle.
Pubescence hirsute to strigose; nutlets indistinctly pitted. Nutlets not constricted.
4. O. occidentale.
Nutlets distinctly constricted just above the base.
5. O. hispidissimum.
Lithospermum virginianum L. Sp. Pl. 132. 1753. Onosmodium virginianum DC. Prodr. 10: 70. 1846.
Densely appressed-hispid or strigose, with stiff hairs; stem rather slender, usually branched above, 1°-2 1/2° high. Leaves oblong, oval, or oblong-lanceolate, obtuse or acutish, sessile, 1'-3 1/2' long, or the lower oblanceolate and narrowed into petioles; calyx-segments linear-lanceolate, acuminate; corolla cylin-dric or nearly so, yellowish-white, about 4" long, the lobes narrowly lanceolate, acuminate, 2 or 3 times as long as wide, nearly as long as the tube, strigose without; nutlets ovoid, obtuse or obtusish, pitted, 1"- 1/2" long.
O. subsetosum Mack. & Bush; Small, Fl. SE. U. S. 1001. 1903.
Stem erect, glabrous, or with a few scattered ap-pressed hairs above, somewhat branched, 30 high or less, the branches appressed-pubescent. Leaves lanceolate, acute, papillose and appressed-hispid above, whitish appressed-pubescent beneath, the larger about 3 1/2' long; bracts 1/2'-1' long; calyx-lobes oblong, obtuse, 3" long; corolla about 5" long, canescent, its lobes triangular, acute, about 1" long; fruiting pedicels 2"-3" long; nutlets whitish, ovoid, 1 1/2" long, obtuse or acutish, not constricted, sparingly pitted.
Barrens, Ozark Mountains, Missouri and Arkansas. June-Aug.