American False Hellebore

Veratrum viride

''Veratrum viride'' is a species of ''Veratrum'' native to eastern and western North America. It is extremely toxic, and is considered a pest plant by farmers with livestock.
Green corn lily  Geotagged,Summer,United States,Veratrum viride

Appearance

It is a herbaceous perennial plant reaching 0.7–2 m tall, with a solid green stem. The leaves are spirally arranged, 10–35 cm long and 5–20 cm broad, elliptic to broad lanceolate ending in a short point, heavily ribbed and hairy on the underside. The flowers are numerous, produced in a large branched inflorescence 30–70 cm tall; each flower is 5–12 mm long, with six green to yellow-green tepals. The fruit is a capsule 1.5–3 cm long, which splits into three sections at maturity to release the numerous flat 8–10 mm diameter seeds. The plant reproduces through rhizome growth as well as seeds.
False Hellebore - Veratrum viride This plant has many colloquial names. But, whatever you may choose to call it, one thing is certain: you don't want to mess with it. False hellebore is highly toxic and contains steroidal alkaloids that can be very dangerous when eaten in large enough quantities. The roots and young shoots are particularly toxic.

This plant was used by some Native American tribes to elect a new leader. All the candidates would eat the root, and the last to start vomiting would become the new leader.

Habitat: Deciduous forest, near a stream False Hellebore,Geotagged,Spring,United States,Veratrum,Veratrum viride,big hellebore,blue hellebore,devils bite,duck retten,giant false-helleborine,green false hellebore,itchweed,poor Annie,tickleweed

Naming

There are two varieties:
⤷ ''Veratrum viride'' var. ''viride''. Eastern North America. Side branches of inflorescence erect or spreading.
⤷ ''Veratrum viride'' var. ''eschscholzianum'' Breitung. Western North America. Side branches of inflorescence drooping.


The related western North American ''Veratrum californicum'' can be distinguished from sympatric var. ''eschscholzianum'' by its whiter flowers, with erect side branches of the inflorescence.
American False Helllebore  American False Hellebore,Geotagged,Summer,United States,Veratrum viride

Distribution

In eastern North America, var. ''viride'' occurs from southwestern Labrador and southern Quebec south to northern Georgia. In the west, var. ''eschscholzianum'' occurs from Alaska and Northwest Territory south through Yukon, British Columbia, Alberta, Washington, Idaho, Montana, and Oregon to northwestern California .

It is found in wet soils in meadows, sunny streambanks, and open forests, from sea level in the north of the range, up to 1,600 m in the southeast and 2,500 m in the southwest.
Green Corn Lily - flower detail  Geotagged,Summer,United States,Veratrum viride

Habitat

In eastern North America, var. ''viride'' occurs from southwestern Labrador and southern Quebec south to northern Georgia. In the west, var. ''eschscholzianum'' occurs from Alaska and Northwest Territory south through Yukon, British Columbia, Alberta, Washington, Idaho, Montana, and Oregon to northwestern California .

It is found in wet soils in meadows, sunny streambanks, and open forests, from sea level in the north of the range, up to 1,600 m in the southeast and 2,500 m in the southwest.

References:

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Taxonomy
KingdomPlantae
DivisionAngiosperms
ClassMonocots
OrderLiliales
FamilyMelanthiaceae
GenusVeratrum
SpeciesV. viride