Typically, I wouldn’t cut a native trillium for a vase, but the Trillium cuneatum below (commonly called Sweet Betsy, or sometimes Purple Toadshade) was collected for entry into the horticulture division of a recent flower show and, I’m happy to say, won first place in the bulb/corm/rhizome/tuber class. Though its foliage is not quite as turgid as it would be in the field, I’ve loved having the bloom on my windowsill and thought you would enjoy a look too.
This native plant is common across the Upstate in moist woodlands with calcium-rich soils derived from limestone. On particularly favorable sites, thousands of plants can carpet the forest floor. Since removing English ivy and other invasive species from our woodland garden over the past five years, the trillium has begun to make a strong comeback. The area pictured below has nearly 60 blooming plants plus many immature specimens.
Surprisingly, we have not had a frost in Greenville in more than four weeks, but the forecast for tonight calls for a low of 34 degrees F. Though these trilliums will be fine if there is frost, tender plants which have bloomed or leafed out ahead of schedule, such as azaleas and hydrangeas, might suffer.
To see what other gardeners are offering in a vase today, visit Cathy at Rambling in the Garden.