Plant DetailShow Menu

Early Saxifrage Micranthes virginiensis

Previously known as:

  • Saxifraga virginiensis
Phonetic Spelling
my-KRAN-thes vir-jin-ee-EN-sis
Description

Early Saxifrage is a native wildflower that is found in dry woods and rocky fields.  In North Carolina, it is a common sight in the Piedmont and Mountains, however rarely found on the Coastal Plains.  It can be found growing as a solitary plant, or in clumps on rocky hillsides, cliffs, stream banks, and wooded slopes.  

Its leaves grow only at the base of the plant (basal leaves).  Atop the 12" tall hairy, sticky stems is a branched cluster of 2" fragrant white flowers.  Unlike some plants, each petal of the showy flower is separate, not fused together.  

Insects, Diseases and Other Plant Problems:  No serious plant problems.

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#native perennial#NC native#native wildflower#native
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#native perennial#NC native#native wildflower#native
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Micranthes
    Species:
    virginiensis
    Family:
    Saxifragaceae
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Central & East Canada to North Central & Eastern U.S.A
    Distribution:
    AL, AR, CT, DC, DE, GA, IL, IN, KY, LA MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MS, NC, NH, NJ, NY, OH, OK, PA RI, SC, TN, VA, VT, WY
    Edibility:
    The young early spring leaves can be eaten in salads.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Herb
    Native Plant
    Wildflower
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Shallow Rocky
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Occasionally Dry
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4b, 4a, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8b, 8a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Green
    Purple/Lavender
    Fruit Type:
    Capsule
    Fruit Length:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Width:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Description:
    The green to purple fruit contains many tiny seeds.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    White
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Fragrant
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Summer
    Flower Petals:
    4-5 petals/rays
    Flower Size:
    1-3 inches
    Flower Description:
    5-petaled white flowers with 10 bright yellow stamens. Sticky flower stalk.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Green
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Shape:
    Elliptical
    Ovate
    Leaf Margin:
    Crenate
    Serrate
    Hairs Present:
    Yes
    Leaf Length:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Description:
    The veined leaves are a rosette of 1 to 3" broadly toothed oval leaves that are hairy around the edges. Often maroon underside.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Cross Section:
    Round
    Stem Description:
    Sticky, densely hairy stems are 4" tall at first flowering, elongating up to 12".
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Theme:
    Native Garden
    Rock Garden