Stem. - Usually curving, one to three feet long. Leaves. - Oblong, veiny. Flowers. - Greenish-white, small, in a terminal raceme. - Perianth. - Six-parted. Stamens. - Six. Pistil. - One. Fruit. - A pale red berry speckled with purple.
A singular lack of imagination is betrayed in the common name of this plant. Despite a general resemblance to the true Solomon's seal, and the close proximity in which the two are constantly found, S. racemosa, has enough originality to deserve an individual title. The position of the much smaller flowers is markedly different. Instead of drooping beneath the stem they terminate it, having frequently a pleasant fragrance, while the berries of late summer are pale red, flecked with purple. It puzzles one to understand why these two plants should so constantly be found growing side by side - so close at times that they almost appear to spring from one point. The generic name is from smilax, on account of a supposed resemblance between the leaves of this plant and those which belong to that genus.
Plate XI. Single flower. Fruit. False Solomon's Seal. - S. racemosa