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Medeola virginiana Linnaeus. Indian Cucumber-root. Phen: Mid Apr-mid Jun; Sep-Oct. Hab: Moist forests, usually with acidic soils. Dist: QC and ON west to MN, south to GA, Panhandle FL and LA.

Origin/Endemic status: Native

Other Comments: The tuber is white, crisp, tasting cucumber-like, usually about 5 cm long and 5 mm in diameter. Bell (1974) described patterns of vegetative growth. Flowering plants have a second, smaller whorl of leaves; the flowers are borne on recurved pedicels beneath the top whorl of leaves. In fruit, however, the pedicels are ascending or erect, bringing the fruits above the top whorl. When the berries are ripe, the leaves of the upper whorl become scarlet at the base, presumably acting as an attractant to frugivorous animals.

Synonymy: = C, F, FNA26, G, GW1, Il, K1, K3, K4, Mo1, NE, NY, Pa, RAB, S, Tat, Tn, Va, W, WH3, WV; = Medeola virginica L. – S13, orrthographic error

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Wetland Indicator Status:

  • Atlantic and Gulf Coastal Plain: FACU
  • Eastern Mountains and Piedmont: FAC
  • Midwest: FACU
  • Northcentral & Northeast: FACU

Heliophily ?: 2

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image of plant© Edwin Bridges | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Scott Ward | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Bruce A. Sorrie | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Edwin Bridges | Original Image ⭷

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