Peninsular Florida, the West Indies (Cuba, Puerto Rico, Lesser Antilles), southern Mexico, Central America and South America. This species is very rare outside of South America.
Map of select IRC data for peninsular Florida
NatureServe Global Status:
State of Florida Status:
Florida Natural Areas Inventory State Status:
IRC SOUTH FLORIDA Status:
SOUTH FLORIDA Occurrence:
SOUTH FLORIDA Native Status:
SOUTH FLORIDA Cultivated Status:
At the time of the publication of Rare Plants of South Florida (Gann, Bradley & Woodmansee 2002), the only known extant population of A. pennula in South Florida was at Arthur R. Marshall Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge in Palm Beach County. Since that time, IRC biologists have discovered three additional populations. In 2003, then IRC biologists Steven Woodmansee and Jimi Sadle found new populations in Big Cypress National Preserve and at Prairie Pines Preserve in Lee County (Woodmansee & Sadle 2005). In 2006, then IRC biologist Keith Bradley and Miami-Dade County biologist Gwen Burzycki found a new population in the South Dade Wetlands, just a few miles from a historical report from what is now Everglades National Park. Even with this new information, A. pennula still meets IRC's criteria of Critically Imperiled in South Florida.
See also, IRC’s report Vascular plant species of management concern in Everglades National Park
(Gann 2015), page 49.