Lyonia lucida

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Lyonia lucida
Lyon luci.jpg
Photo by John R. Gwaltney, Southeastern
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta - Flowering plants
Class: Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Order: Ericales
Family: Ericaceae
Genus: Lyonia
Species: L. lucida
Binomial name
Lyonia lucida
(Lam.) K. Koch
Lyon luci dist.jpg
Natural range of Lyonia lucida from USDA NRCS Plants Database.

Common names: fetterbush lyonia; shining fetterbush[1]

Taxonomic notes

Synonyms: Desmothamnus lucidus (Lamarck) Small; Neopieris nitida (Bartram ex Marshall) Britton[1]

Varieties: none[1]


A description of Lyonia lucida is provided in The Flora of North America. It is distinguishable by glossy, coriaceous leaves with a prominent vein along the margins.[1]


L. lucida ranges from southeast Virginia to southern Florida, then west to east-central Louisiana. This species is also found in western Cuba.[1]



L. lucida has been found in wet depressions of slash pine ridges, slash pine valleys, dunes, scrub oak areas, open pine woods, cypress swamps, pine flatwoods, thickets, streambanks, shrub bogs, titi swamps, and marshes.[2] It is also found in disturbed areas including cut over pinelands, abandoned dumps, roadsides, and trails.[2] Associated species: Myrica cerifera, Ilex vomitoria, Leucothoe axillaris, Itea virginica, Ilex myrtifolia, I. coriacea, Cliftonia monophylla, Persea palustris, Lyonia lucida, Aronia arbutifolia, Cyrilla racemiflora, Smilax laurifolia, and Quercus spp..[2]

L. lucida increased its presence in response to soil disturbance by heavy silviculture in North Carolina. It has shown regrowth in reestablished longleaf pinelands that were disturbed by this practice.[3] It had mixed responses to soil disturbance by clearcutting and roller chopping in north Florida. The plant's foliar cover was dependent on time since disturbance in pinewood habitats with these disturbances.[4] It also decreased cover and stems per acre in response to chopping in south Florida saw palmetto-pineland communities. It has shown resistance to regrowth in reestablished pinelands that were disturbed by chopping.[5]

Lyonia lucida is frequent and abundant in the Central Florida Flatwoods/Prairies and North Florida Wet Flatlands community types as described in Carr et al. (2010).[6] The habitats that it frequents include pocosins, wet woodlands, blackwater swamp forests, other acidic wetlands, especially if peaty.[1]


L. lucida flowers from February to early June and fruits from September through October.[1]


Lyonia lucida has been observed at the Archbold Biological Station to host bees such as Bombus impatiens (family Apidae) and sweat bees such as Lasioglossum placidensis (family Halictidae).[7] Additionally, L. lucida has been observed to host true bugs such as Kleidocerys resedae (family Lygaeidae) and treehoppers such as Spissistilus festinus (family Membracidae).[8]

Conservation, cultivation, and restoration

Cultural use

Photo Gallery

References and notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 Weakley, A.S. 2020. Flora of the Southeastern United States. Edition of 20 October 2020. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Florida State University Herbarium Database. URL: Last accessed: June 2021. Collectors: Luis Almodovar, Loran C. Anderson, Tom Barnes, Andre F. Clewell, Suellen Folensbee, Robert K. Godfrey, Bruce Hansen, JoAnn Hansen, Robert L. Lazor, Sidney McDaniel, and L. B. Trott. States and counties: Florida: Franklin, Gadsden, Leon, Liberty, Martin, Okaloosa, Wakulla, and Walton.
  3. Cohen, S., R. Braham, and F. Sanchez. (2004). Seed Bank Viability in Disturbed Longleaf Pine Sites. Restoration Ecology 12(4):503-515.
  4. Lewis, C.E., G.W. Tanner, and W.S. Terry. (1988). Plant responses to pine management and deferred-rotation grazing in north Florida. Journal of Range Management 41(6):460-465.
  5. Moore, W.H. (1974). Effects of Chopping Saw-Palmetto-Pineland Threeawn Range in South Florida. Journal of Range Management 27(2):101-104.
  6. Carr, S.C., K.M. Robertson, and R.K. Peet. 2010. A vegetation classification of fire-dependent pinelands of Florida. Castanea 75:153-189.
  7. Deyrup, M.A. and N.D. 2015. Database of observations of Hymenoptera visitations to flowers of plants on Archbold Biological Station, Florida, USA.
  8. [1]