Herbs or shrubs, with opposite entire dotted leaves, and no stipules. Flowers regular, hypogynous, mostly yellow. Sepals 5, persistent. Petals 5, deciduous. Stamens mostly numerous, and usually in 3 or more clusters. Styles 3-5, sometimes united. Pod 1-5-celled. Seeds numerous.
1. Hyper'icum. Petals 5, unequal-sided, convolute in the bud, yellow.
2. Elo'des. Petals 5, equal-sided, imbricated in the bud, purplish.
L. St. John's-wort. * Pod 3-celled. Styles 3, separate. Petals with black dots.
1. H. perforatum, L. (Common St. John's-wort.) Stem much branched, producing runners at the base, slightly 2-edged. Leaves linear-oblong, with transparent dots, easily observed by holding the leaf up to the light. Petals deep yellow. Flowers in open leafy cymes. - Fields.
2. H. corymbo'sum, Muhl. (Corymbed S.) (H. macula-tum, Walt.) Stem rounded, not so branching as No. 1. Leaves with both black and transparent dots, oblong, somewhat clasping. Flowers small, pale yellow, crowded, corymbea.- Damp woods and wet places generally.
**Pod 5-celled. Styles more or less united. Stamens very many, in 5 clusters, if clustered at all.
3. H. pyramidatum, Ait. (Great St. John's-wort.) Stem 3-5 feet high. Leaves 2-3 inches long, somewhat clasping. Flowers very large, the petals about an inch long, and narrowly obovate. Stamens showy. Pod conical, large. - Along streams; not common.
4. H. Kalmia'num, L. (Kalm's S.) Shrubby, a foot or more in height; leaves linear-lanceolate, crowded, revolute on the margins, thickly punctate, and sessile. Flowers about 1 inch across, in clusters. - Niagara Falls and westward.
* * * Pod l-celled, purple.
5. H. ellip'ticum, Hook. (Elliptical-leaved S.) Stem about 1 foot high, not branched. Leaves spreading, elliptical-oblong, obtuse, thin. Flowers rather few, showy, in a nearly naked cyme. Pod purple, ovoid, obtuse. Petals pale yellow. - Banks of streams, eastward.
6. H. mu'tilum, L. (Small S.) Stem slender, branching above, hardly a foot high. Leaves 5-nerved. Cymes leafy at the base. Flowers small, not 1/4 of an inch across. - Low grounds.
7. H. Canadense, L. (Canada S.) Stem upright, 6-15 inches high, with branches erect. Leaves linear or linear-lanceolate, 3-nerved at the base, the upper ones acute, sessile. Cymes naked. Pod much longer than the calyx. Flowers small, deep yellow. - Wet, sandy places.
2. ELO'DES. Adans. Marsh St. John's-wort. E. Virgin'ica, Nutt. (E. campanulata, Pursh.) Stem smooth.Leaves oblong or oval, clasping, often purple-veined, obtuse, conspicuously dotted beneath. Flowers flesh-coloured, in the axils, and at the summit of the stem. The whole plant is of a purplish hue. - Marshes.