Silene regia

Species:Silene regia Sims
Common Name:Royal Catchfly
Associated Ecological Communities:**
Growth Habit:Herb
Plant Notes:Royal Catchfly is a native herbaceous perennial in the Pink family (Caryophyllaceae). It is native to the Black Belt region of Alabama and the limestone glades of Bibb County. It occurs in the edge of prairies and in open calcareous woodlands. Royal Catchfly is a perennial with a stout, fleshy taproot. Each root crown produces 1-5 upright, green stems that are 2-3 feet in length. The stems are unbranched below the inflorescence and retrorse-pubescent towards the base and glandular pubescent towards the apex. Leaves are basal and cauline. Basal leaves form a rosette, and are usually withered at flowering. Stem leaves are opposite, sessile, lanceolate to ovate in outline, with entire margins. The leaves have 3 distinct veins and are pubescent om both surfaces. Flowers are produced from the axils of the upper leaves and in terminal cymes. The individual flowers have a glandular pubescent pedicel that is 1-4 times as long as the calyx. The calyx in green, papery, glandular pubescent, and inflated around the fruit. The corolla is scarlet in color with 5 petals. The petals are un-lobed. The fruit is a capsule. Royal Catchfly is currently known to occur in two Alabama counties (Bibb and Wilcox), with historical records from three other counties (Butler, Dallas, and Montgomery). It is designated as an S2 species in Alabama (typically 6 to 20 occurrences, few remaining individuals, acres, or miles of stream, or factors demonstrably making it very vulnerable in the state). It is similar to two other Silene species found in the state that have bright red flowers. Royal Catchfly is taller and less branched than Fire Pink (Silene virginica Linnaeus) or Roundleaf Catchfly (Silene rotundifolia Nuttall). Flower petals in Royal Catchfly are also un-lobed, while they are notched in the other two species. Fire Pink is widespread in Alabama, and usually flowers earlier in the year. Roundleaf Catchfly is known from a single county in northwest Alabama, and it also usually flowers earlie
Taxonomic Notes:**
Status:Native, S2 (State Rank), G3G4 (Global Rank)

** Not applicable or data not available.


FamilyCARYOPHYLLACEAE - Pink family
Genus Silene
Species Silene regia Sims - Royal Catchfly


Citation Silene regia Sims, Bot. Mag. 41: t. 1724. 1815.
Basionym: **
Type: MISSOURI: "environs of St. Louis",

** Not applicable or data not available.


SynonymFull CitationBasionymType
Melandrium illinoense Melandrium illinoense Rohrbach, Linnaea 36: 250. 1869, nom. illegit.Silene regia Sims 1815. 
Silene scabra Silene scabra Rafinesque, Aut. Bot. 18. 1840. KENTUCKY

Specimens and Distribution

This species has been reported in the following counties by the herbaria listed. An overview of the individual specimens are provided in the table that follows. Click on the accession number to view details; click on column headers to sort; choose a county or herbaria to filter the specimen data.

Counties included on distribution map: Bibb, Wilcox

Counties represented by specimen data listed below:

Herbaria represented by specimen data listed below: ALNHS, AUA, TROY, UNA, UWAL

Range of years during which specimens were collected: 1877 - 1877

Barcode / Accession No. County Coll. Date Collector &
Collection No.
Herbarium &
Herbarium Name Used
UWAL0052294 Bibb 19 Oct 2018 Keener, Brian R.
Silene regia Sims
AUA_ACC_53570 Bibb 1 Nov 1992 Allison, James R.
Silene Regia Sims
UNA00057764 Bibb 19 Jul 1992 Allison, James R.
Silene regia Sims
UWAL0037549 Bibb 31 Aug 1992 Allison, James (Jim) R.
Silene regia Sims
UWAL0008548 Wilcox 07 Aug 2007 Keener, Brian R.
Silene regia Sims
ALNHS00005763 Bibb 19 Jul 2018 Barger, T. Wayne
Silene regia Sims
UNA00067118 Wilcox 07 Aug 2007 Keener, Brian R.
Silene regia Sims
UWAL0001811 Wilcox 27 Jul 2010 Diamond, Alvin R.
Silene regia Sims
UNA00033690 Bibb 31 Jul 1877 Smith, Eugene A.
Silene regia Sims
TROY000031902 Wilcox 27 Jul 2010 Diamond, Alvin R.
Silene regia Sims
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