Medeola virginiana

Common Names: Indian cucumber, Indian cucumber root
Category: Plants
Sub-category: Lily family

Shoots consist of two tiers of whorled leaves. The lower tier typically bears between five and nine (occasionally up to 12) lance shaped leaves. The upper tier bears three to five ovate leaves. The leaves have an entire (smooth) margin. Some individuals lack a second tier of whorled leaves. The second tier is produced when the plant flowers. When two-tiered, plants grow to 30 inches high. The flowers have yellowish green tepals. The fruit is a dark blue to purple, inedible berry above the top tier of leaves. Indian cucumber-root shoots arise each spring from an overwintering tuberlike structure. This structure produces a series of horizontal rhizomes at 45 degree angles which produces a clonal colony of plants in an octagonal pattern.

It grows in rich, moist woods. Blooms late spring.

Primary Flower Color: Green
Secondary Flower Color: Yellow
Edible Notes: This plant produces a crisp, edible tuber that smells and tastes like garden cucumber.
Warnings: Not known to be dangerous.