Plant A Day – White Fawnlily

White Fawnlily Erythronium albidum

White Fawnlily
Erythronium albidum

According to the USDA Plants database, there are three species of Erythronium in Indiana, the Dogtooth Violet, the Midland Fawnlily and this one.  The Midland Fawnlily is quite rare in Indiana and it’s quite possible that it’s not found here at all, but the Dogtooth Violet and White Fawnlily can often be found growing in colonies in the same woods.  The leaves are almost identical but the flowers of the Dogtooth Violet are yellow while the White Fawnlily flower are white.

The Erythronium can be split into two groups, the eastern U.S. and the western U.S.  It’s easy to see the distributions on the BONAP website.

Erythronium’s are small lilies with six recurved petals.  They are one of the earliest to sprout in the spring.  They transplant and grow easily so are often used in natural woodland gardens.

Typical mottled leaf

Typical mottled leaf

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The pod is evident in early summer and the whole plant is mostly gone by mid-summer

The pod is evident in early summer and the whole plant is mostly gone by mid-summer

 

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