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Prairie Trillium Trillium recurvatum

Previously known as:

  • Trillium recurvatum f. luteum
Phonetic Spelling
TRIL-ee-um rek-er-VAY-tum
Description

Prairie Trillium is a native wildflower found in forest and woodland areas in the central and eastern U.S.A.  growing in the rich soils of cove forests over calcareous rocks. It is a NC Significantly Rare species. 

The maroon 3-petaled sessile flowers appear above the mottled bracts in spring. The plant can take up to 10 years to bloom and usually go dormant by mid-summer. They slowly spread by rhizomes to form colonies.

Plant in humus-rich moist soils in part shade to dappled sunlight in a woodland setting. They can be naturalized under trees.

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems:  No serious problems.  Slugs and snails are occasional pests and leaf spot, rust and smut are occasional disease problems. It does not transplant well.

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#showy flowers#yellow#maroon#perennial#white flowers#moths#shade tolerant#yellow flowers#native perennial#piedmont#shade garden#spring flowers#moist soil#food source#NC native#well-drained soil#perennial flowers#small and large mammals#mountains#colonies#green fruits#summer interest#spring interest#pollinator plant#native wildflower#late spring flowers#larval host plant#fruits summer#food source summer#mid-spring flowers#forb#food source herbage#food source pollen#piedmont mountains UPL#loamy soils tolerant#clay soils tolerant#perennials#dry soils tolerant#pollen plant#maroon flowers#loam#food source soft mast fruit#moth larvae#Coastal FACU#food source mid-summer#partial shade tolerant#loamy soil#ants#shade flowers#host#pollinators#pollinator garden#bee friendly#audubon#heavy shade tolerant
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#showy flowers#yellow#maroon#perennial#white flowers#moths#shade tolerant#yellow flowers#native perennial#piedmont#shade garden#spring flowers#moist soil#food source#NC native#well-drained soil#perennial flowers#small and large mammals#mountains#colonies#green fruits#summer interest#spring interest#pollinator plant#native wildflower#late spring flowers#larval host plant#fruits summer#food source summer#mid-spring flowers#forb#food source herbage#food source pollen#piedmont mountains UPL#loamy soils tolerant#clay soils tolerant#perennials#dry soils tolerant#pollen plant#maroon flowers#loam#food source soft mast fruit#moth larvae#Coastal FACU#food source mid-summer#partial shade tolerant#loamy soil#ants#shade flowers#host#pollinators#pollinator garden#bee friendly#audubon#heavy shade tolerant
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Trillium
    Species:
    recurvatum
    Family:
    Melanthiaceae
    Uses (Ethnobotany):
    Trilliums have been used in herbal medicine
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Division
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Central and eastern U.S.A.
    Distribution:
    AL , AR , IA , IL , IN , KY , LA , MI , MO , MS , NC , OH , OK , PA , TN , TX , WI
    Wildlife Value:
    Bees and other pollinating insects enjoy the nectar from the flowers. Moths use this plant as a larval host. Ants and small mammals enjoy the fruits as a food source.
    Play Value:
    Attractive Flowers
    Attracts Pollinators
    Wildlife Food Source
    Wildlife Larval Host
    Dimensions:
    Height: 0 ft. 6 in. - 1 ft. 6 in.
    Width: 0 ft. 9 in. - 1 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Herbaceous Perennial
    Native Plant
    Poisonous
    Wildflower
    Habit/Form:
    Erect
    Spreading
    Growth Rate:
    Slow
    Maintenance:
    Medium
    Texture:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Dappled Sunlight (Shade through upper canopy all day)
    Deep shade (Less than 2 hours to no direct sunlight)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    High Organic Matter
    Loam (Silt)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Occasionally Dry
    Available Space To Plant:
    Less than 12 inches
    NC Region:
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    4a, 4b, 5b, 5a, 6b, 6a, 7b, 7a, 8a, 8b, 9b, 9a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Green
    Purple/Lavender
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Summer
    Fruit Type:
    Berry
    Capsule
    Fruit Length:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Width:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Description:
    The 6-parted berry-like capsule is pale to purplish-green and is available from July to August. Seeds are dispersed by ants.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Red/Burgundy
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Solitary
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Flower Shape:
    Star
    Flower Petals:
    2-3 rays/petals
    Flower Size:
    1-3 inches
    Flower Description:
    Maroonish three-petaled flowers that bloom mid to late spring. The rhombic-elliptic shaped petals curve inward at the tips. In North Carolina, the flowers bloom from April to May. Up to 1.75 inches long.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Variegated
    Leaf Feel:
    Smooth
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Whorled
    Leaf Shape:
    Ovate
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    3-6 inches
    Leaf Width:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Three mottled dark and light green leaves that are actually bracts are 3-6" long 1 1/2" and 3 1/2" wide. Under surfaces are solid light green. Parallel leaf venation.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Purple/Lavender
    Red/Burgundy
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Cross Section:
    Round
    Stem Surface:
    Smooth (glabrous)
    Stem Description:
    Light green to reddish purple, round, smooth and stout.
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Naturalized Area
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Native Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Shade Garden
    Design Feature:
    Mass Planting
    Small groups
    Attracts:
    Bees
    Moths
    Pollinators
    Small Mammals