Erect, forked herb, perennial by rootstocks. Rich, moist woods and thickets. New England and Ontario to Minnesota and south to Florida and Mississippi. Frequent in northern Ohio. May, June.
Short, with fleshy roots.
Leafy, smooth, pale green, ten to twenty inches high, terete, forked above the middle, bearing solitary terminal flowers, and one to three leaves below the fork.
Alternate, oblong, or ovate-lanceolate, acute at the apex, smooth-margined, perfoliate, parallel-veined, two to four inches long, with more or less of bloom.
Pale yellow, lily-like, drooping, solitary on terminal peduncles, often hidden by the leaves, rarely two together, fragrant; an inch or an inch and a quarter long.
Sepals and petals indistinguishable, pale yellow, six in number, three-fourths to an inch or more long, spatulate-lanccolate, pointed at apex, slightly swollen at base with a deep honey-bearing groove within, bordered on each side by a ridge.
Six, short, slightly adhering to the base of the perianth segments; anthers linear, opening laterally.
One; ovary three-lobed, three-celled; style three-cleft.
Capsule, three-lobed, and three-angled, cut off at the top; with concave sides and grooved angles. Seeds few in each cell.
Pollinated by bees and flies. Nectar-bearing.
The smaller form of the Perfoliate Bellwort is the more abundant one. Its stem is leafy and forks just above the middle; below the fork are usually three leaves, though sometimes fewer. The stem is round and smooth, the leaves are rather thin, oblong, pointed and entirely surround the stalk so that apparently the stem grows through them. The edges are entire. The solitary, pale-yellow lily hangs like a pendant from the end of the drooping branch, and is often hidden among the crowded overhanging leaves. Each pendant lily has six sepal-petals, all alike in form and color. They have nectaries at the base, are rough within, and the tips spread and curve outward more than do those of the Large-Flowered Bellwort. The two are frequently found together, but this is a trifle later in bloom and more abundant.
Fruit of Perfoliate Bellwort. Uvularia perfoliata