Rhodora 41: 198. 1939 ,
Phenology: Flowering (May-)Jun–Jul(-Oct).
Habitat: Shaded, moist ravines and gorges
Elevation: (100-)200-1100 m
Ala., Ga., Ky., Miss., N.C., S.C., Tenn., Va.
Stewartia ovata is likely not naturally occurring in Florida; the only specimen seen is from cultivation in an Alachua County nursery (Wilmot s.n., 21 May 1945, FLAS). Human threats to the species include land-use conversion and habitat fragmentation. A form with purplish filaments [var. grandiflora (Bean) Weatherby] is generally not recognized and is hypothesized to be the result of either genetic instability (C. E. Wood Jr. 1959b) or introgression with S. malacodendron. Stewartia ovata is cultivated as an ornamental for its showy flowers and red fall foliage.