American mandrake

Podophyllum peltatum

Photo/Illustration: 
Jennifer Benner
Photo/Illustration: 
Jennifer Benner
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American mandrake (Podophyllum peltatum)
poe-doe-FIL-lum pel-TAY-tum
Genus:  Podophyllum
Mayapple is a rhizomatous, native woodland perennial with leaves in the shape of an umbrella. They may form large colonies. In spring, white or pale pink waxy flowers are mostly hidden under the leaves. The greenish "mayapple" follows and is often eaten by wildlife. When fully ripe, the fruits may be used to make preserves or jellies, but they are toxic when unripe. Leaves and roots are poisonous. Plants often go dormant in the summer. Grow in a woodland garden.
Noteworthy Characteristics:  Umbrellas of leaves; waxy flowers; greenish fruit.
Care:  Grow in leafy, moist soil in full or partial shade. Can tolerate drier soil than other species.
Propagation:  Divide in spring or late summer, or sow seed in an open frame as soon as ripe.
Problems:  Slugs may damage new spring growth.

Overview

Height
1 ft. to 3 ft.
Spread
3 ft. to 6 ft.
Growth Habit
Runs
Growth Pace
Moderate Grower
Light
Part Shade to Full Shade
Moisture
Medium Moisture
Maintenance
Low
Characteristics
Fragrant Flowers,
Native,
Showy Foliage
Bloom Time
Early Spring,
Late Spring,
Spring
Flower Color
Pink Flower,
White Flower
Uses
Beds and Borders,
Naturalizing
Style
Woodland Garden
Seasonal Interest
Spring Interest
Type
Perennials

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