Name compounded of chrysos, golden, and splen, the spleen; probably from some reputed medicinal qualities.

Perennial. Native. An inconspicuous, early blooming plant, growing in cold, wet places. Nova Scotia to Georgia and west to Minnesota. Found in northern Ohio. March-May.


Slender, decumbent, and forking.


Principally opposite, roundish or heart-shaped, obscurely crenate.


Inconspicuous, greenish, tinged with yellow or purple.


Tube coherent with the ovary; lobes four to five, yellow within.




Eight to ten, very short, inserted on a conspicuous disk.


One; styles two.


Many-seeded capsule.

March 30, 1856. Walden Pond.

In this warm recess at the head of a meadow, though the rest is covered with snow a foot or more in depth, I was surprised to see the Skunk-Cabbage, with its great spear-heads, open and ready to blossom, and the Caltha palustris bud, which shows yellowish, and the Golden Saxifrage green and abundant, all surrounded and hemmed in by snow, which has covered the ground since Christmas. - Thoreau.

A low, insignificant plant with a forking stem, roundish, fine-scalloped leaves, and small yellowish or purplish green flowers with orange anthers.