Plants of New Jersey # 16 False Hellebore

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False Hellebore

Welcome! Today we are going to discuss False Hellebore (Veratrum viride).  False Hellebore can grow to up to 6 1/2 feet tall. The wetland indicator status of this plant is FACW which means this plant is primarily found in freshwater wetlands.  False Hellebore is part of the Lily family of plants.

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False Hellebore

The leaves, in my opinion, are rather neat looking. That said, a lot of people confuse this plant (especially in early spring) with Skunk Cabbage (Symplocarpus foetidus). A good way to know the difference is this plant does not smell.

False Hellebore

False Hellebore in Bloom

False Hellebore is perennial (which means it comes back every year). The flowers of False Hellebore are yellow-green. The plant blooms between May and July.  It takes between 7-10 years for a plant to bloom. You can find this plant usually where Skunk Cabbage grows (forested wetlands & wet meadows).

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False Hellebore Leafing Out in Early Spring

Livestock owners are not fond of False Hellebore as all parts of this plant are extremely toxic especially the roots. There have been cases where livestock have gotten poisoned from eating this plant. As you can imagine, we humans should never eat this plant either!

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4 thoughts on “Plants of New Jersey # 16 False Hellebore

  1. shoreacres

    I especially like the last photo of the leaves poking through the leaves. I’ve seen some gardeners’ hellebores, and I think they must be a different species. Maybe they’re the ‘true’ hellebores’!

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  2. Pingback: False Hellebore can grow to up to 6 1/2 feet tall in the forests of eastern North America. The wetland indicator status of this plant is FACW which means this plant is primarily found in freshwater wetlands. – Hiking Tips

  3. Pingback: Plants of New Jersey # 18 Spice Bush | NJUrbanForest.com

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