St. Andrews Cross (Hypericum hypericoides) is a member of the St. Johnswort family. It’s distinguished from the other Hypericum wildflowers primarily by the four petals, which form the cross, instead of the typical five petals. The blossom appears in July and August in the Smoky Mountains.
Native Americans chewed the root as a remedy for snakebite and made tea from the leaves to treat a variety of ailments. Modern medicine has investigated its use in treatment of HIV.
If you are in the area on vacation, please stop in and visit me to see the complete display of Smoky Mountains Photography at the William Britten Gallery in Gatlinburg, TN. There may be a special Smokies photo memory for you to take home.
And if you are a wildflower enthusiast, please join our Smoky Mountains Wildflowers Community on Facebook. We exchange photo identifications, bloom locations, and info on these delicate and beautiful plants.