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Trillium luteum (Muhl.) Harbison

Yellow trillium

KingdomPlantaePlants, but not fungi, lichens, or algae
SubkingdomTracheobiontaVascular plants—plants with a “circulatory system” for delivering water and nutrients
DivisionMagnoliophytaFlowering plants, also known as angiosperms
ClassLiliopsidaMonocots (plants with a single seed leaf); includes the lily family
SubclassLiliidaeIncludes lilies, orchids, and many others
OrderLilialesIncludes lilies, tulips, trilliums, greenbriars, and others
FamilyMelanthiaceaeTrillium family
GenusTrillium“Three-petaled lily”
SpeciesluteumLatin for “yellow”

About plant names...

Wood lily is native to the southeastern United States.

Identification: Plants have 1-4 round flowering stems, 6-16″ (14-40 cm) tall. A whorl of three leaves forms atop each stem, each leaf facing straight upward, with a single flower emerging from the center. The flower is connected directly to the leaves. Leaves are oval in shape, 2½-7″ (6.5-17 cm) × 2½-3½″ (6.5-9.8 cm), wider at the base, tapering to pointed tips, and with even edges. The flower is erect, looking a little like a candle flame, ¾-1¾″ (2.2-4.7 cm) × ~5/16″ (8-9 mm), and smells like lemons. Three small specialized leaves ("bracts") lie flat below the flower. Fruits are green to greenish white, occasionally with dark streaks, roughly oval, 6-angled, 1¼″ (3.5 cm) × ¾″ (2 cm).

See also this Trillium comparison table.

Online References:

in Paghat's Garden

The U.S. Forest Service Celebrating Wildflowers site

The Missouri Botanical Garden

The U.S. Forest Service Celebrating Wildflowers site


Trillium cuneatum Raf. var. luteum (Muhl.) H.E. Ahles

Trillium viride Beck var. luteum (Muhl.) Gleason


Trillium luteum description by Thomas H. Kent, last updated 25 May 2020.

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Trillium luteum (yellow trillium)

5/22/2010 · Garden in the Woods, Framingham, Mass­a­chu­setts · ≈ 3 × 4½′ (98 × 147 cm)


About this map...