False Solomon’s Seal (Maianthemum racemosum)

False Solomon Seal 2016

False Solomon’s Seal is a perennial that can reach three feet tall and blooms from April to May with a cluster of creamy white flowers at the end of the stem.   Although the leaf pattern is similar to our Solomon’s Seal, the large bloom at the end of the stem set it apart from the native Solomon’s Seal which has multiple tiny blossoms underneath the leaves.  The flower cluster produce green berries in the summer and turn red by fall.   False Solomon’s Seal colonizes by it root system and also by seeds.   It likes loose soil with composted material (as you would find in a wooded area) and it does well in full shade to part shade.

The Cherokee would steep the roots in cold water to bathe sore eyes.   A root tea was made for a contraceptive.    A tea was also made into a laxative.   A poultice was made from the roots to treat rheumatism.

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