Meadow Beauty (Rhexia Virginica)

Meadow Beauty (Rhexia Virginica) is a pretty little plant that always causes a thrill of admiration to pass through us as we come across it in grassy marshes where other flowers are usually few and very far between.

Meadow Beauty; Deergrass. Rhexia virginica.

Meadow Beauty; Deergrass. Rhexia virginica.

The individual blossoms are very handsome, but the plant, as a whole, has rather a disheveled appearance; it has numerous buds, two or three of which, only, open at a time, lasting but for a short space, the petals then falling off and the calyx and long stamens becoming withered and brownish; these detract greatly from an otherwise very beautiful plant.

Meadow Beauty or "Deer-grass' is a perennial, has a stout stem, quite branching and sharp-pointed, ovate, toothed, three-ribbed leaves, seated oppositely on the stem. The flowers grow on slender peduncles from the angles of the upper leaves; they have four large, rounded, magenta petals, each with a short, sharp point at the tip. The eight stamens are long and slightly unequal, the anthers being exceptionally large and bright golden-yellow; the calyx is urn-shaped, with four, short, sharp teeth. Meadow beauty is found blooming during July and August in sandy marshes and shores from Me. to Fla. and in the states bordering the Mississippi. Several other species are found, differing but slightly, as follows:

Rhexia aristosa has a square, or wing-angled stem, linear-oblong leaves and pink or purple petals. Found in pine barrens from N. J. to Ga.

R. mariana has a round stem and linear-oblong leaves with short stems. Found in sandy swamps from N. Y. to Fla. and west to Mo. and Tex.

R. ciliosa has a square stem, broad, ovate leaves few, stemless flowers with straight anthers. Found from Md. to Fla. and La.