• Maianthemum racemosum

    False solomon's seal

Maianthemum racemosum

False solomon's seal Description:

Maianthemum racemosum, commonly known as feathery false lily of the valley or Solomon's seal, is a herbaceous perennial plant that is native to North America. It is a member of the lily family and is found growing in woodlands, forest edges, and along shaded stream banks.

The plant grows up to 3 feet in height and spreads to form a dense mat of foliage. It has arching stems that emerge from underground rhizomes and are topped with clusters of small, white, fragrant flowers. The flowers are typically arranged in a terminal raceme that can be up to 10 inches (25 cm) long. The flowers are followed by red berries that are an important food source for birds and small mammals.

The plant has feathery, oval-shaped leaves that grow up to 6 inches (15 cm) long and are arranged alternately along the stem. The leaves are dark green in color and have a smooth, waxy texture. The plant is often mistaken for true lily of the valley, but can be distinguished by the arrangement of the leaves on the stem and the absence of the characteristic bell-shaped flowers.

Feathery false lily of the valley is a popular garden plant and can be grown in moist, well-drained soil in partial to full shade. It is a good choice for woodland gardens, rock gardens, and shade gardens, as well as for groundcover in shaded areas. The plant has a number of medicinal uses and has been traditionally used as a herbal remedy for a variety of ailments, including as a treatment for rheumatism and respiratory issues.

Native Range:

False solomon's seal is found across the continental United States. 

Standard Plant Information:

Plant Height: 1' - 3' 

Bloom Time: May - June

Preferred Habitat: Does well in part shade to shade and is often found in woods.


For most homeowners, the best option is to scatter seed on the ground by hand broadcasting at a minimum of 16-64 pls ounces per acre.  For even coverage, we recommend that you broadcast seed in perpendicular rows across the site to ensure even coverage.

You’ll want to broadcast any grass seed first, which will get raked into the soil lightly. Next, it is ideal to mulch the area lightly with either a clean (no seed) straw or preferably with our native Little Bluestem straw, sold at our retail garden centers. After a light mulching is complete, now it’s time to broadcast your native wildflower seeds, which should not be raked into the soil. A good rain or watering is sufficient to cover the seed.


Simply dig a hole in the soil slightly larger than the plant’s roots. Ensure that the soil line of the plant is maintained during the transfer (i.e. the plant should be at the same level with the ground as it was in the pot). Pack any loose dirt back around the plant and make sure you water it well the same day to ensure it has the best chance of survival.

maps used with permission from MN Wildflowers

Maianthemum racemosum Gallery

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