Cephalanthus occidentalis

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Common Names: Common Buttonbush [1], Globeflower [2]

Cephalanthus occidentalis
Cephalanthus occidentalis AFP.jpg
Photo by the Atlas of Florida Plants Database
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta - Flowering plants
Class: Magnoliopsida - Dicots
Order: Rubiales
Family: Rubiaceae
Genus: Cephalanthus
Species: C. occidentalis
Binomial name
Cephalanthus occidentalis
Natural range of Cephalanthus occidentalis from USDA NRCS Plants Database.

Taxonomic Notes

Synonyms: Cephalanthus occidentalis var. occidentalis, Cephalanthus occidentalis var. pubescens

Varieties: none


C. occidentalis is a perennial shrub/tree of the Rubiaceae family native to North America. [1]


The C. occidentalis is found in the eastern United States, California and Arizona, as well as eastern Canada. [1]



C. occidentalis habitat is primarily wetlands. It can be found on streambanks, depressional wetlands, lakes, and in other standing water. [3]

This shrub requires full sunlight for flowering and can withstand habitats of up to three feet of standing water. [1]

Seed bank and germination

Seeds of the C. occidentalis need to be germinated in moist soil under full sun or slight shade. [1]

Use by animals

The seeds of the C. occidentalis shrub is eaten by waterfowl and wood ducks will use the structure of the shrub for nesting. Also, bees and other insects use the pollen and nectar. [1]

Conservation and Management

Herbicides can be detrimental to the species. Intense fires will decrease the response of regrowth, though the C.. occidentalis can resprout after lower intensity burns. [1]

Cultivation and restoration

C. occidentalis can be used for erosion control on shorelines. It has a strong base that can stabilize the plant and the shoreline. [1]

Photo Gallery

References and notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 USDA Plant Database
  2. Gee, K. L., et al. (1994). White-tailed deer: their foods and management in the cross timbers. Ardmore, OK, Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation.
  3. Weakley, A. S. (2015). Flora of the Southern and Mid-Atlantic States. Chapel Hill, NC, University of North Carolina Herbarium.