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Polygonatum biflorum

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Plant types and subtypes: Perennials

Light Requirements: part-sun, part-shade, shade

Water Use: medium

Soil Moisture: moist, wet

Soil Description: rich, average

Height: 2'-5'

Bloom Time: May, June

Bloom Color: white

Leaf Color: green

Hardiness Zone: 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8

Additional Tags: berries, colonizing, edible, naturalizing, ornamental foliage, shade garden plant, showy fruit, stream margin plant, woodland plant

Polygonatum biflorum var. commutatum (smooth Solomon's seal)
  • Polygonatum biflorum var. commutatum (smooth Solomon's seal)
  • Polygonatum biflorum var. commutatum (smooth Solomon's seal)
  • Polygonatum biflorum var. commutatum (smooth Solomon's seal)
  • Polygonatum biflorum var. commutatum (smooth Solomon's seal)

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Description

Polygonatum biflorum

Also known as:

smooth Solomon's seal

,

Solomon's seal

,

giant Solomon's seal

Scientific Synonyms:

Convallaria biflora, Polygonatum canaliculatum, Polygonatum commutatum

Description

Smooth Solomon's seal is an unusual plant with arching stems that can grow to 5' long. In spring, clusters of greenish-white, bell-shaped flowers appear dangling below the stems along the leaf axils. In fall, the flowers will give way to attractive deep-purple berries.

Cultivation

Polygonatum biflorum should be grown in moist, rich soil that does not dry out during summer. It occurs naturally in moist prairies, woodlands and along stream banks. Plants tolerate a fair amount of direct sun, but will grow larger with more shade. This Solomon's seal should be given plenty of room in order to take advantage of the visual display provided by its tall arching stems. It blooms in May or June. Zones 3-8

Propagation

Propagate by rhizome division, or from seed in fall.

Additional Notes

There are disagreements as to what characteristics define this species, and synonyms abound. The starchy roots of Polygonatum biflorum var. commutatum, were collected and prepared for consumption by native Americans.

Native Range & Classification

Recorded County Distribution: USDA data

Native Range:
AL, AR, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, IA, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MS, MT, NC, ND, NE, NH, NJ, NM, NY, OH, OK, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, VA, VT, WI, WV, WY

USDA Endangered Status:

  • Endangered: NH

Classification

Kingdom Plantae Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta Flowering plants
Class Liliopsida Monocotyledons
Subclass Liliidae
Order Liliales
Family Liliaceae Lily family
Genus Polygonatum Solomon's seal
Species Polygonatum biflorum smooth Solomon's seal