Common Names: Virginia knotweed, jumpseed, woodland knotweed
Sub-category: Smartweed family
It is unusual as a shade-tolerant member of a mostly sun-loving genus. Jumpseed is a perennial, named for its seeds which can "jump" several feet when a ripe seedpod is disturbed. Like other Persicaria, jumpseed has alternate leaves, with fine-hairy stipular sheaths (ocrea) with bristle-fringed edges which often turn brownish. Flowers, widely spaced along slender stalks, are white to greenish-white, rarely pink-tinged, and fruiting flowers have 2 downward-pointing hook-tipped styles. Persicaria virginiana is easily distinguished from most other Persicaria species by its much larger, more oval-shaped leaves, although a few species also have large leaves. It sometimes has a chevron-shaped marking on the leaves; often a single plant will have this marking on some leaves but not others. Cultivars and naturalized populations from cultivation show much greater variation than wild-type plants, sometimes having variagation or have more involved red patterning, and sometimes having red or pink flowers.
It naturally occurs in full to partial shade, on riverbanks, woods, cliffs, and rocks. Blooms in midsummer to late summer/early fall.
Primary Flower Color: White
Secondary Flower Color: Green