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FNA | Family List | FNA Vol. 26 | Liliaceae | Maianthemum

1. Maianthemum canadense Desfontaines, Ann. Mus. Natl. Hist. Nat. 9: 54. 1807.

False lily-of-the-valley, two-leaved Solomon’s-seal, Canadian may-lily, maïanthème du Canada

Maianthemum canadense var. interius Fernald; Smilacina canadensis (Desfontaines) Pursh; Rafinesque; Unifolium canadense (Desfontaines) Greene

Plants terrestrial, 10–25 cm. Rhizomes sympodial, proliferatively branching, units 2–30 cm × 1–1.5 mm, roots restricted to nodes. Stems erect, 1–1.8 dm × 1–2.5 mm. Leaves solitary on sterile shoots, 2–3 on fertile shoots; blade 4.5–7(–9) × 3–4.5(–5.5) cm, apex acute or short-caudate; proximal leaves sessile, blade ovate, base with narrow sinus; distal leaves petiolate, blade cordate, petiole 1–7 mm. Inflorescences racemose, complex, 12–25-flowered. Flowers (1–)2(–3) per node, 2-merous; tepals conspicuous, 1.5–2 × 0.8–1 mm; filaments 1–1.5 mm; anthers 0.2–0.4 mm; ovary globose, 0.8–1 mm wide; style 0.5–0.8 mm; stigma distinctly 2-lobed; pedicel 3–7 × 0.2–0.5 mm. Berries green mottled red when young, maturing to deep translucent red, globose, 4–6 mm diam. Seeds 1–2, globose, 3 mm. 2n = 36, 54, 72.

Flowering early spring. Deciduous and coniferous forests, persisting in forest remnants and parks; 0--1800 m; St. Pierre and Miquelon; Alta., B.C., Man., N.B., Nfld. and Labr., N.W.T., N.S., Ont., P.E.I., Que., Sask., Yukon; Conn., Del., D.C., Ga., Ill., Ind., Iowa, Ky., Maine, Md., Mass., Mich., Minn., Mont., Nebr., N.H., N.J., N.Y., N.C., N.Dak., Ohio, Pa., R.I., S.C., S.Dak., Tenn., Vt., Va., W.Va., Wis., Wyo.

Pubescent specimens of Maianthemum canadense in the western half of the range with consistently larger leaves have been treated as var. interius.


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