Podophyllum peltatum

Common Names: Mayapple, American mandrake, wild mandrake, ground lemon
Category: Plants
Sub-category: Barberry family

Mayapples are woodland plants, typically growing in colonies derived from a single root. The stems grow to 30 to 40 cm tall, with palmately lobed umbrella-like leaves up to 20 to 40 cm diameter with 3 to 9 shallowly to deeply cut lobes. The plants produce several stems from a creeping underground rhizome; some stems bear a single leaf and do not produce any flower or fruit, while flowering stems produce a pair or more leaves with 1 to 8 flowers in the axil between the apical leaves. The flowers are white, yellow or red, 2 to 6 cm diameter with 6 to 9 petals, and mature into a green, yellow or red fleshy fruit 2 to 5 cm long.

Often found growing in large colonies on the forest floor in spring.

Primary Flower Color: White
Secondary Flower Color: Yellow
Edible Notes: All the parts of the plant are poisonous, including the green fruit, but once the fruit has turned yellow, it can be safely eaten with the seeds removed. Due to the general toxicity of the plant, it is strongly not recommended.
Warnings: The plant is very poisonous in all parts except the ripe fruit but including seeds.