Special Collections


NCBG - Mountain Habitat

The Mountain Habitat Garden contains plants and trees that are characteristic of the mountainous areas of the southern Appalachians at elevations ranging from 1,500 feet to 6,684 feet. Dense shade from canopy trees and abundant moisture create a cove-like environment for these species. Plants native to North Carolina's western boundary include spring-blooming wildflowers such as trilliums, bluebell, bloodroot, liverleaf, and Oconee bells; members of the heath family, such as mountain laurel, flame azalea, rhododendrons, and leucothoe; Canadian hemlock, white pine, and tulip tree; and many species of ferns. A dominant historical feature in this habitat garden, the Paul Green Cabin, was moved to the North Carolina Botanical Garden in 1991 and restored. In this cabin, playwright Paul Green did much of his research and writing on uses of native herbs. Green's plays often incorporated the botanical knowledge and herbal folk wisdom of North Carolina's native peoples and settlers. This habitat garden also features displays of ferns and woodland wildflowers from all the geographic regions of North Carolina that grow best in a shady location.

Last Update: 2020-01-01

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scientific common duration habit height thumb detail
Acer pensylvanicum Striped Maple Perennial Tree, Shrub detail
Acer saccharum Sugar Maple Perennial Tree, Shrub detail
Acer spicatum Mountain Maple Perennial Tree, Shrub detail
Aconitum uncinatum Southern Blue Monkshood Perennial Forb/herb 2-5 ft. detail
Actaea racemosa Early Black-cohosh Perennial Forb/herb 3-8 ft. detail
Adiantum capillus-veneris Southern Maidenhair Perennial Forb/herb 1-2 ft. detail
Adiantum pedatum Northern Maidenhair Perennial Forb/herb 1-2 ft. detail
Aesculus flava Yellow Buckeye Perennial Tree, Shrub 50 to 75 ft. detail
Aesculus parviflora Bottlebrush Buckeye Perennial Tree, Shrub 6-12 ft. detail
Aesculus pavia Red Buckeye Perennial Tree, Shrub 12-36 ft. detail
Aesculus sylvatica Painted Buckeye Perennial Tree, Shrub 3-16 ft. detail
Allium tricoccum Ramp Perennial Forb/herb 6-11 in. detail
Amsonia tabernaemontana Eastern Bluestar Perennial Forb/herb 1-3 ft. detail
Aquilegia canadensis Eastern Columbine Perennial Forb/herb 1-3 ft. detail
Aralia nudicaulis Wild Sarsaparilla Perennial Subshrub, Forb/herb 12-18 in. detail
Arisaema dracontium Green Dragon Perennial Forb/herb 1-2 ft. detail
Arisaema triphyllum Jack-in-the-pulpit Perennial Forb/herb 1-2 ft. detail
Aruncus dioicus Goats-beard Perennial Forb/herb 3-6 ft. detail
Asarum canadense Wild Ginger Perennial Forb/herb 2–8 in. detail
Asclepias exaltata Poke Milkweed Perennial Forb/herb 2-6 ft. detail
Asplenium platyneuron Ebony Spleenwort Perennial Forb/herb 1 ft. detail
Asplenium rhizophyllum Walking Fern Perennial Forb/herb detail
Astilbe biternata Appalachian False Goat’s Beard Perennial Forb/herb 3-6 ft. detail
Athyrium asplenioides Southern Lady Fern 2-3 ft. detail
Bignonia capreolata Cross-vine Perennial Vine to 30 feet or more detail
Calycanthus floridus Sweet-shrub Perennial Shrub 4-6 ft. detail
Camassia scilloides Atlantic Camas Perennial Forb/herb 1-2 ft. detail
Campanula divaricata Appalachian Bellflower Perennial Forb/herb 8-30 in. detail
Cardamine concatenata Cutleaf Toothwort Perennial Forb/herb 8-12 in. detail
Cardamine diphylla Broad-leaf Toothwort Perennial Forb/herb 6-15 in. detail
Cardamine douglassii Limestone Bittercress Perennial Forb/herb 3-15 in. detail
Carex fraseriana Fraser’s Sedge detail
Carex pensylvanica Pennsylvania Sedge Perennial Graminoid 8-10 in. detail
Carex plantaginea Seersucker Sedge Perennial Graminoid 1-2 ft. detail
Carex platyphylla Broadleaf Sedge Perennial Graminoid detail
Castanea pumila Chinquapin Perennial Tree, Shrub detail
Caulophyllum thalictroides Blue Cohosh Perennial Forb/herb 1-3 ft. detail
Ceanothus americanus New Jersey Tea Perennial Subshrub, Shrub 3-4 ft. detail
Celtis laevigata Southern Hackberry Perennial Tree, Shrub 65–100 ft. detail
Cercis canadensis Eastern Redbud Perennial Tree, Shrub 16–33 ft. detail
Chamaelirium luteum Fairy-wand Perennial Forb/herb 1-4 ft. detail
Chelone glabra White Turtlehead Perennial Forb/herb 2-5 ft. detail
Chelone lyonii Pink Turtlehead Perennial Forb/herb 1-2 ft. detail
Cladrastis kentukea Kentucky Yellow-wood Perennial Tree 36-72 ft. detail
Claytonia virginica Eastern Spring-beauty Perennial Forb/herb 4-6 in. detail
Clematis virginiana Virgin’s-bower Perennial Vine 15ft detail
Clethra acuminata Mountain Sweet-pepperbush Perennial Tree, Shrub detail
Collinsonia canadensis Northern Horsebalm Perennial Forb/herb 2-3 ft. detail
Comptonia peregrina Sweet Fern Perennial Subshrub, Shrub detail
Cornus alternifolia Alternate-leaf Dogwood Perennial Tree, Shrub detail
Cornus florida Flowering Dogwood Perennial Tree, Shrub 12-36 ft. detail
Corydalis flavula Short-spurred Corydalis Annual Forb/herb 4-12 in. detail
Corylus americana American Hazelnut Perennial Shrub 10-16 ft. detail
Croomia pauciflora Croomia Perennial Forb/herb 6-12 in. detail
Cryptotaenia canadensis Canadian Honewort Perennial Forb/herb 1-3 ft. detail
Cystopteris bulbifera Bulblet Bladder Fern Perennial Forb/herb detail
Cystopteris protrusa Lowland Bladder Fern Perennial Forb/herb detail
Decumaria barbara Climbing Hydrangea Perennial Vine Climbs up to 50 ft. detail
Dennstaedtia punctilobula Boulder Fern Perennial Forb/herb detail
Deparia acrostichoides Silvery Spleenwort Perennial Forb/herb detail
Dicentra canadensis Squirrel Corn Perennial Forb/herb 4-12 in. detail
Dicentra cucullaria Dutchman’s Breeches Perennial Forb/herb 4-12 in. detail
Diervilla rivularis Mountain Bush Honeysuckle Perennial Shrub detail
Diervilla sessilifolia Smooth Southern Bush-honeysuckle Perennial Shrub 3-6 ft. detail
Dioscorea oppositifolia Chinese Yam Perennial Vine, Forb/herb to 65 ft. (tall) detail
Diphylleia cymosa American Umbrellaleaf Perennial Forb/herb 1-3 ft. detail
Diplazium pycnocarpon Glade Fern Perennial Forb/herb 2-3 ft. detail
Dirca palustris Eastern Leatherwood Perennial Shrub detail
Dodecatheon meadia Eastern Shooting Star Perennial Forb/herb 6-20 in. detail
Dryopteris celsa Log Fern Perennial Forb/herb 2-4 ft. detail
Dryopteris cristata Crested Wood-fern Perennial Forb/herb detail
Dryopteris goldiana Goldie’s Wood-fern Perennial Forb/herb detail
Dryopteris intermedia Fancy Fern Perennial Forb/herb detail
Dryopteris ludoviciana Southern Wood-fern Perennial Forb/herb detail
Dryopteris marginalis Marginal Wood-fern 18-24 in. detail
Echinacea purpurea Eastern Purple Coneflower Perennial Forb/herb 1.5-4 ft. detail
Epigaea repens Trailing Arbutus Perennial Subshrub, Shrub 4-6 in. detail
Erythronium albidum White Trout Lily Perennial Forb/herb 4-8 in. detail
Erythronium umbilicatum Dimpled Troutlily Perennial Forb/herb 4-10 in. detail
Eubotrys racemosus Swamp Doghobble Perennial Shrub to 6 ft. detail
Euonymus americanus Heart’s-a-bustin’ Perennial Forb/herb, Subshrub 4-6 ft. detail
Eurybia divaricata White Wood Aster Perennial Forb/herb 1-2 ft. detail
Eurybia macrophylla Big-leaved Aster Perennial Forb/herb 1-3 1/2 ft. detail
Fagus grandifolia American Beech Perennial Tree 50-80 feet detail
Fothergilla major Mountain Witchalder Perennial Shrub detail
Frasera caroliniensis American Columbo Perennial Forb/herb 3-9 ft. detail
Galium triflorum Fragrant Bedstraw Perennial Forb/herb, Vine 1-3 ft. detail
Gelsemium sempervirens Carolina Jessamine Perennial Vine, Shrub Climbs 8-10 feet or more detail
Geranium maculatum Wild Geranium Perennial Forb/herb 8-24 in. detail
Geum canadense White Avens Perennial Forb/herb 1 1/2-2 1/2 ft. detail
Goodyera pubescens Downy Rattlesnake Plantain Perennial Forb/herb 4-15 in. detail
Halesia carolina Carolina Silverbell Perennial Tree, Shrub 30-40 ft. detail
Hamamelis virginiana American Witch-hazel Perennial Tree, Shrub 8-20 ft.; width 8-20 ft. detail
Heliopsis helianthoides Smooth Oxeye Perennial Forb/herb 2-5 ft. detail
Helonias bullata Swamp Pink Perennial Forb/herb 1-2 ft. (taller with fruiting) detail
Hepatica acutiloba Sharp-lobe Liverleaf detail
Hepatica americana Round-lobe Liverleaf detail
Heuchera americana American Alumroot Perennial Forb/herb 6-10 in. detail
Hexastylis lewisii Lewis’ Heartleaf Perennial Forb/herb 4-12 detail
Hexastylis minor Little Heartleaf Perennial Forb/herb 3-6 in. detail
Hexastylis naniflora Dwarf-flower Heartleaf Perennial Forb/herb detail
Hexastylis shuttleworthii Large-flower Heartleaf Perennial Forb/herb 4-8 in. detail
Houstonia caerulea Azure Bluet Perennial Forb/herb 2-6 in. detail
Houstonia serpyllifolia Appalachian Bluet Perennial Forb/herb 4-7 in. detail
Huperzia lucidula Shining Clubmoss Perennial Subshrub, Forb/herb detail
Hydrangea arborescens Smooth Hydrangea Perennial Shrub 3-5 ft. detail
Hydrangea radiata Silverleaf Perennial Shrub detail
Hydrastis canadensis Golden-seal Perennial Forb/herb 10-15 in. detail
Hydrophyllum canadense Bluntleaf Waterleaf Perennial Forb/herb 8-28 in. detail
Hymenocallis occidentalis Hammock Spiderlily Perennial Forb/herb 12-18 in. detail
Hypericum densiflorum Bushy St. John’s-wort Perennial Shrub 4 ft. detail
Hypericum prolificum Shrubby St-John's-wort Perennial Shrub, Subshrub 1-4 ft. detail
Ilex decidua Deciduous Holly Perennial Tree, Shrub 7-20 ft. detail
Impatiens capensis Jewelweed Annual Forb/herb 3-5 ft. detail
Impatiens pallida Pale Touch-me-not Annual Forb/herb 2-6 ft. detail
Iris cristata Dwarf Crested Iris Perennial Forb/herb 4-6 in. detail
Jeffersonia diphylla Twinleaf Perennial Forb/herb 6-11 in. detail
Juglans nigra Black Walnut Perennial Tree detail
Kalmia latifolia Mountain Laurel Perennial Tree, Shrub 10-15 ft. detail
Leucothoe fontanesiana Mountain Doghobble Perennial Shrub 6 ft. detail
Lilium michauxii Carolina Lily Perennial Forb/herb 18 in.-3 1/2 feet detail
Lilium superbum Turk’s-cap Lily Perennial Forb/herb 3-7 ft. detail
Lindera benzoin Smooth Northern Spicebush Perennial Tree, Shrub 6-9 ft. detail
Liparis liliifolia Lily-leaf Twayblade Perennial Forb/herb to 1 ft. detail
Liquidambar styraciflua Sweet Gum Perennial Tree (10–)15–35(–45) m tall. detail
Liriodendron tulipifera Tulip-tree Perennial Tree detail
Lobelia cardinalis Cardinal Flower Perennial Forb/herb 2-4 ft. detail
Lobelia siphilitica Great Blue Lobelia Perennial Forb/herb 1.5-4 ft. detail
Lonicera dioica Limber Honeysuckle Perennial Vine detail
Lorinseria areolata Netted Chain Fern 18-24 in. detail
Luzula acuminata Hairy Woodrush Perennial Graminoid up to 1 ft. detail
Luzula echinata Spreading Wood-rush Perennial Graminoid detail
Lygodium palmatum American Climbing Fern Perennial Vine, Forb/herb detail
Lyonia ligustrina Maleberry Perennial Shrub detail
Lysimachia lanceolata Lanceleaf Loosestrife Perennial Forb/herb 1-2 ft. detail
Magnolia acuminata Cucumber Magnolia Perennial Tree detail
Magnolia fraseri Fraser Magnolia Perennial Tree detail
Magnolia macrophylla Bigleaf Magnolia Perennial Tree 30- 40 ft. detail
Magnolia tripetala Umbrella Magnolia Perennial Tree 30-40 ft. detail
Maianthemum canadense Canada Mayflower Perennial Forb/herb 1 1/2-7 in. detail
Maianthemum racemosum Solomon’s-plume Perennial Forb/herb 10-24 in. detail
Marshallia grandiflora Appalachian Barbara’s-buttons Perennial Forb/herb 59-89 cm detail
Meehania cordata Meehania Perennial Forb/herb detail
Mertensia virginica Virginia Bluebells Perennial Forb/herb 12-28 in. detail
Mitchella repens Partridge-berry Perennial Subshrub, Forb/herb to 4 in. (trailing 1/2-1 ft.) detail
Mitella diphylla Two-leaf Bishop's-cap Perennial Forb/herb 8-16 in. detail
Monarda clinopodia Basil Beebalm Perennial Forb/herb 2-3 ft detail
Neviusia alabamensis Alabama Snow-wreath Perennial Shrub 3-6 ft. detail
Nyssa sylvatica Black Gum Perennial Tree 60 plus feet detail
Onoclea sensibilis Sensitive Fern Perennial Forb/herb 1-2 ft. detail
Osmorhiza longistylis Anise-root Perennial Forb/herb 1--2 1/2 ft. detail
Osmundastrum cinnamomeum Cinnamon Fern Perennial Forb/herb detail
Pachysandra procumbens Allegheny-spurge Perennial Subshrub, Forb/herb 6-10 in. detail
Packera aurea Golden Ragwort Perennial Forb/herb 1-2 ft. detail
Panax quinquefolius American Ginseng Perennial Forb/herb 1-2 ft. detail
Parthenocissus quinquefolia Virginia Creeper Perennial Vine detail
Passiflora lutea Yellow Passionflower Perennial Vine, Forb/herb to 15 ft. long detail
Pedicularis canadensis Eastern Lousewort Perennial Subshrub, Forb/herb 4-16 in. detail
Penstemon smallii Small’s Beardtongue Perennial Forb/herb 18-24 in. detail
Phacelia bipinnatifida Fern-leaf Scorpion-weed Biennial Forb/herb 1-2 ft. detail
Phacelia purshii Miami-mist Annual Forb/herb detail
Phegopteris hexagonoptera Broad Beech Fern Perennial Forb/herb 1-2 ft. detail
Philadelphus inodorus Appalachian Mock-orange Perennial Shrub 3-10 ft. detail
Phlox carolina Carolina Phlox Perennial Forb/herb to 3 ft. detail
Phlox divaricata Eastern Blue Phlox Perennial Forb/herb to 20 in. detail
Picea rubens Red Spruce Perennial Tree detail
Pinus echinata Rosemary Pine Perennial Tree (15–)20–35(–45) m tall. detail
Pinus strobus Eastern White Pine Perennial Tree detail
Pinus taeda Loblolly Pine Perennial Tree (20–)25–40(–55) m tall. detail
Podophyllum peltatum May-apple Perennial Forb/herb 12-18 in. detail
Polygonatum biflorum var. commutatum King Solomon’s-seal Perennial Forb/herb 3-5 ft. detail
Polypodium virginianum Common Rockcap Fern Perennial Forb/herb detail
Polystichum acrostichoides Christmas Fern Perennial Forb/herb 1-2 ft. detail
Prosartes lanuginosa Yellow Fairybells Perennial Forb/herb 1-2.5 ft. detail
Prunus serotina Black Cherry Perennial Tree, Shrub to 50 ft. detail
Quercus imbricaria Shingle Oak Perennial Tree detail
Quercus michauxii Swamp Chestnut Oak Perennial Tree detail
Quercus muehlenbergii Chinkapin Oak Perennial Tree detail
Quercus velutina Black Oak Perennial Tree to 80 feet x 40 feet detail
Rhododendron austrinum Florida Flame Azalea Perennial Shrub 6-10 feet Spread 4-6 feet detail
Rhododendron calendulaceum Flame Azalea Perennial Shrub 4-8 ft. detail
Rhododendron carolinianum Carolina Rhododendron Perennial Shrub detail
Rhododendron catawbiense Catawba Rhododendron Perennial Tree, Shrub detail
Rhododendron maximum Great Laurel Perennial Tree, Shrub detail
Rhododendron minus Gorge Rhododendron Perennial Shrub 6 ft. detail
Rhododendron periclymenoides Pinxter-flower Perennial Shrub 4-6 ft. detail
Rhododendron prinophyllum Election Pink Perennial Shrub detail
Rhododendron prunifolium Plumleaf Azalea Perennial Shrub 6-10 ft.; width 4-6 ft. detail
Rhododendron vaseyi Pinkshell Azalea Perennial Shrub detail
Rhus typhina Staghorn Sumac Perennial Shrub, Tree to 30 feet detail
Ribes echinellum Miccosukee Gooseberry Perennial Shrub detail
Rosa palustris Swamp Rose Perennial Subshrub 4-6 ft. detail
Rubus odoratus Flowering Raspberry Perennial Subshrub detail
Rudbeckia laciniata Green-head Coneflower Perennial Subshrub, Forb/herb 3-7 ft. detail
Salvia lyrata Lyreleaf Sage Perennial Forb/herb 1-2 ft. detail
Sambucus canadensis Common Elderberry height and spread 8-12 feet detail
Sanguinaria canadensis Bloodroot Perennial Forb/herb 6-12 in. detail
Sanicula marilandica Maryland Sanicle Perennial Forb/herb 1-4 ft. detail
Sedum ternatum Woodland Stonecrop Perennial Forb/herb 3-6 in. detail
Shortia galacifolia Oconee Bells Perennial Subshrub, Forb/herb 4-8 in. detail
Silene polypetala Eastern Fringed Catchfly Perennial Forb/herb detail
Silene stellata Starry Campion Perennial Forb/herb 1-4 ft. detail
Silene virginica Fire Pink Perennial Forb/herb 12-18 in. detail
Sisyrinchium dichotomum Isothermal Irisette Perennial Forb/herb detail
Smilax rotundifolia Bullbriar Perennial Shrub, Vine detail
Solidago curtisii Curtis’s Goldenrod Perennial Forb/herb 1-3 ft. detail
Solidago faucibus Gorge Goldenrod Perennial Forb/herb detail
Spigelia marilandica Pinkroot Perennial Forb/herb 1-2 ft. detail
Spiraea alba White Meadowsweet Perennial Shrub detail
Staphylea trifolia American Bladdernut Perennial Tree, Shrub 10-15 ft. detail
Stellaria pubera Giant Chickweed Perennial Forb/herb 4-16 in. detail
Symphyotrichum cordifolium Common Blue Wood Aster Perennial Forb/herb to 3 ft. detail
Symplocarpus foetidus Skunk Cabbage Perennial Forb/herb 1-2 ft. detail
Taxus canadensis American Yew Perennial Shrub detail
Thalictrum clavatum Lady-rue Perennial Forb/herb 6-24 in. detail
Thalictrum coriaceum Appalachian Meadowrue Perennial Forb/herb 2-4 ft. detail
Thalictrum dioicum Early Meadow-rue Perennial Forb/herb 12-30 in. detail
Thalictrum revolutum Skunk Meadow-rue Perennial Forb/herb 4-5 ft. detail
Thalictrum thalictroides Windflower Perennial Forb/herb 4-8 in. detail
Thelypteris kunthii Southern Shield Fern Perennial Forb/herb 2-3 ft. detail
Thelypteris noveboracensis New York Fern Perennial Forb/herb 1-2 ft. detail
Thelypteris palustris var. pubescens Marsh Fern Perennial Forb/herb detail
Tiarella cordifolia Foamflower Perennial Forb/herb 10-12 in. detail
Tiarella cordifolia var. collina Foamflower Perennial Forb/herb 6-12 in.; spread-1 ft. detail
Tradescantia ohiensis Ohio Spiderwort Perennial Forb/herb 10 in.-4 ft. detail
Tradescantia subaspera Wide-leaved Spiderwort Perennial Forb/herb 1 1/2-3 ft. detail
Tradescantia virginiana Virginia Spiderwort Perennial Forb/herb 6-20 in. detail
Trillium catesbaei Catesby’s Trillium Perennial Forb/herb 10-18 in. detail
Trillium cernuum Northern Nodding Trillium Perennial Forb/herb detail
Trillium cuneatum Little Sweet Betsy Perennial Forb/herb 6-11 in. detail
Trillium decumbens Decumbent Trillium Perennial Forb/herb detail
Trillium discolor Pale Yellow Trillium Perennial Forb/herb detail
Trillium grandiflorum Great White Trillium Perennial Forb/herb 6-20 in. detail
Trillium luteum Yellow Trillium Perennial Forb/herb 4-12 in. detail
Trillium stamineum Twisted Trillium Perennial Forb/herb detail
Trillium vaseyi Sweet Beth Perennial Forb/herb 12-28 in. detail
Tsuga canadensis Eastern Hemlock Perennial Tree 60 ft. detail
Tsuga caroliniana Carolina Hemlock Perennial Tree detail
Uvularia grandiflora Large-flower Bellwort Perennial Forb/herb 8-24 in. detail
Uvularia perfoliata Perfoliate Bellwort Perennial Forb/herb 6-18 in. detail
Uvularia sessilifolia Sessileleaf Bellwort Perennial Forb/herb 6-10 in. detail
Vaccinium macrocarpon Large Cranberry Perennial Subshrub, Shrub 6 in. detail
Vaccinium stamineum Common Deerberry Perennial Shrub 6 feet tall and wide detail
Valerianella radiata Beaked Cornsalad Annual Forb/herb 4-18 in. detail
Vernonia noveboracensis New York Ironweed Perennial Forb/herb 3-7 ft. detail
Veronicastrum virginicum Culver’s-root Perennial Forb/herb 2-4 ft. detail
Viburnum prunifolium Smooth Blackhaw Perennial Tree, Shrub to 25 ft. detail
Viola sororia Common Blue Violet Annual, Perennial Forb/herb 2-8 in. detail
Xanthorhiza simplicissima Yellowroot Perennial Subshrub, Forb/herb 1-2 ft. detail