HabitatRead full entry
Comments: Sandy or dry-mesic pine-oak woods; also observed above the mowed area of a highway shoulder at the edge of woods (herbaria of A.K. Gholson, Florida State University and University of Florida). The plants observed by Kral (1983) were in leaf litter beneath oaks or pines in moist or seasonally dry sandy loam, topped by a thin layer of dark, unincorporated humus. The overstory trees were Pinus taeda, P. palustris, Quercus nigra, Q. hemisphaerica, Q. falcata and Nyssa sylvatica. The understory and herb layer included Cornus, Vaccinium, Rhododendron, Agrimonia, Gentiana, Mitchella and Pedicularis. The area showed some history of fire.
The plants observed by Gholson (1987, pers. comm.) were in longleaf pine-oak woods with a sparse herbaceous element (including wiregrass, Aristida stricta), but were not found directly under the trees.
Spigelia gentianoides has been observed very infrequently, and appears to be endemic to northwest Florida. Specimens have been collected from Calhoun, Gadsden, Jackson, Liberty and Washington counties (Hurley 1968, Ward 1979, Florida State University and University of Florida herbaria). A specimen from Levy county cited in the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service status survey of S. gentianoides  is actually S. loganioides, according to the specimen label [University of South Florida herbarium]). There is an unconfirmed report that the species may occur in Georgia.