Common Names in English:
Bloody Butcher, Bloody Noses, Brown Bess, Prairie Trillium, Red Trillium, Toadshade, Wake-Robin
; rhizomes subterranean
, horizontal or semierect, monopodial, unbranched or weakly branched, elongated to thick and fleshy
, compressed-shortened, distal end tapered to point
, apex bearing large terminal
cataphylls, and contractile, adventitious, ringed roots
. Scapes arising from terminal bud or axil of adjacent
(subterranean in T. petiolatum), erect
, straight (decumbent
, S-shaped in T. decumbens and T. reliquum). Bracts on mature
in whorl of 3, uniformly green or mottled
or sessile, venation
palmate-reticulate, with 3-5 major veins, ovate
. Inflorescences terminal, 1-flowered. Flowers: some totally to partially syncarpous
or sessile; sepals persistent
, 3, distinct
, green, maroon, or with maroon markings, foliaceous, oblong
, ovate, or lanceolate, alternating with bracts; petals shriveling after anthesis
, typically 3, erect, spreading
, or recurved, distinct, red, purple, pink, white, yellow, green, or combination
of these, ovate or obovate to linear
, sometimes clawed; stamens 6, alternating in 2 whorls of 3, erect, incurved
, or divergent; filaments
mostly short, basally expanded; anthers
2-locular, ± equaling or longer
than filaments, dehiscence extrorse
, or introrse
flat between (or in some species extending beyond) anther sacs
; ovary superior, proximal
portion 3-locular, 3- or 6-lobed, some axile
, some parietal
or a combination of both, distal portion forming stigmas; stigmas often persistent, 3, spreading, twisted, or erect, sometimes connate
, sessile or with very short style, linear to subulate
. Fruits capsular
, fleshy with obscure
sutures, not or rarely dehiscent
along sutures, each shed as unit
through abscission of thin-walled cells
. Seeds many, elliptic
, 2-4 mm, bearing white or yellowish, large, oily, myrmecochorous elaiosome (aril). x
= 5. 2n = 10 in all American species recorded.
Species 43: North America, Asia.
Trillium is traditionally divided into two subgenera , which overlap in some characters. Botanists consider subg. Trillium to be the more primitive group, because the genera considered closest to Trillium all have pedicellate flowers, as does subg. Trillium, except for one variety of T. pusillum that bears sessile to only barely pedicillate flowers.
There is not yet agreement among taxonomists about the relationships among the species within the genus. Certain ones, such as Trillium recurvatum and T. lancifolium, clearly are closely related, but the interrelationships of many others are not obvious. In the absence of definitive studies, the species are listed here alphabetically within subgenera. Several species of Trillium contain sapogenins that have been used medicinally as astringents, coagulants , expectorants , and uterine stimulants, hence the common names birthwort and Indian balm, and T. erectum, T. grandiflorum, and possibly other species have been utilized commercially as beth root (W. B . Zomlefer 1996). Fruits, seeds, and rhizomes of trilliums are generally considered to be poisonous. Deer, however, feed voraciously on T. grandiflorum plants, especially in early spring . Gardeners and wildflower enthusiasts, over most of the temperate zones of the world, consider trilliums to be among the most beautiful of wildflowers. Species of Trillium exhibit few and obscure structural differences, making key construction difficult (J. D. Freeman 1975).
Species Trillium recurvatum
Rhizomes horizontal, white, slender, elongated, brittle. Scapes typically
, 1.5-4.8 dm, slender to robust
Bracts held well above ground
, strongly petiolate
in darker green or bronze, mottling fading with
seasonal expansion after anthesis
, rarely all green, ovate
or lanceolate, 6-18 × 2.5-6.5 cm, not glossy, apex acuminate;
1/5 bract length. Flower erect
, fragrance not reported;
sepals strongly recurved basally and held against scape by turgor
, green, sometimes purple-streaked, ovate-lanceolate, 18-35
× 6-18 mm, margins
entire, apex acute; petals long-lasting,
erect, ± connivent, ± concealing stamens and ovary,
dark maroon purple to clear yellow, occasionally 2-colored with purple
and yellow, not spirally twisted, lanceolate to ovate, 1.8-4.8 ×
0.9-2 cm, thick-textured, base
attenuate to weakly clawed, margins
entire, apex acute; stamens incurved
, 10-15 mm; filaments
dark purple, 4-6 mm, ± slender; anthers
above filaments, dark purple, 5-16 mm, ± thick, dehiscence
strongly incurved inward, dark purple, projecting
about 1 mm beyond anther sacs
; ovary greenish with ± purple
distally, transversely rhombic
to angular-ovate, somewhat
6-angled or -winged, 7-10 mm, ± equaling filament height;
stigmas erect, divergent-recurved, distinct
, ± linear
mm, slightly thickened basally. Fruits green to white- and purple-streaked,
odorless, rhomboid-ovoid, 6-angled, almost winged
, ca. 1 cm diam.,
pulpy. 2n = 10. [source]
Trillium recurvatum has several named color forms, most notably forma shayi E. J. Palmer & Steyermark with clear yellow petals, and one foliose anomaly (possibly caused by mycoplasma). [source]
Flowers: Bloom Period: February, March, April, May. • Flower Color: maroon
Size: 6-12" tall.
Culture: Space 6-9" apart.
Soil: Minimum pH: 5.6 • Maximum pH: 7.5
Sunlight: Sun Exposure: Light Shade.
Temperature: Cold Hardiness: 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b. (map)
- Whittaker & Margulis,1978
- Haeckel, 1866
- Cavalier-Smith, 1981
- Sinnott, 1935 ex Cavalier-Smith, 1998
- Vascular Plants
- Kenrick & Crane, 1997
- Brongniart, 1843
- Takhtajan, 1967
- Superorder: Lilianae () - Takhtajan, 1967
- Subclass: Liliidae () - Takhtajan, 1967
- Class: Spermatopsida () - Brongniart, 1843
- Infraphylum: Radiatopses () - Kenrick & Crane, 1997
- Subphylum: Euphyllophytina ()
- Phylum: Tracheophyta () - Sinnott, 1935 ex Cavalier-Smith, 1998 - Vascular Plants
- Subkingdom: Viridaeplantae () - Cavalier-Smith, 1981
- Kingdom: Plantae () - Haeckel, 1866 - Plants
Trillium reflexum Clute 1922
Publishing author : Beck
Members of the genus Trillium
ZipcodeZoo has pages for 58 species, subspecies, varieties, forms, and cultivars in this genus:
T. albidum (Giant Trillium) · T. angustipetalum (Narrowpetal Wakerobin) · T. catesbaei (Bashful Wakerobin) · T. cernuum (Nodding Trillium) · T. chloropetalum (Giant Wakerobin) · T. chloropetalum (Torr.) Howell var. chloropetalum (Torr.) T.J.Howell (Giant Wakerobin) · T. chloropetalum giganteum (Giant Wakerobin) · T. chloropetalum var. chloropetalum (Giant Wakerobin) · T. chloropetalum var. giganteum (Giant Wakerobin) · T. cuneatum (Little Sweet Betsy) · T. decipiens (Chattahoochee River Wakerobin) · T. decumbens (Trailing Trillium) · T. discolor (Mottled Wakerobin) · T. erectum (Red Erect Trillium) · T. erectum f. albiflorum (White Erect Trillium) · T. erectum var. japonicum (Stinking Benjamin) · T. flexipes (Bent Trillium) · T. foetidissimum (Mississippi River Wakerobin) · T. gracile (Sabine River Wakerobin) · T. grandiflorum (Great White Trillium) · T. grandiflorum f. polymerum 'Flore Pleno' (Double-Flowered American Wake-Robin) · T. grandiflorum Gothenburg pink strain (Great White Trillium) · T. grandiflorum 'Flore Pleno' (Trillium) · T. kamtschaticum (Trillium) · T. kurabayashi (Wake Robin) · T. kurabayashii (Giant Purple Wakerobin) · T. lancifolium (Lanceleaf Wakerobin) · T. ludovicianum (Louisiana Wakerobin) · T. luteum (Lemon Trillium) · T. maculatum (Spotted Wakerobin) · T. nivale (Dwarf White Wakerobin) · T. ovatum (Pacific Trillium) · T. ovatum oettingeri (Oettinger's Trillium) · T. ovatum 'Roy Elliott' (Western Trillium) · T. parviflorum (Smallflower Wakerobin) · T. persistens (Persistent Trillium) · T. petiolatum (Idaho Trillium) · T. pusillum (Dwarf Wakerobin) · T. pusillum var. ozarkanum (Ozark Wake-Robin) · T. pusillum var. pusillum (Dwarf Wakerobin) · T. pusillum var. virginianum (Virginia Wakerobin) · T. rectum (Stinking Benjamin) · T. recurvatum (Bloody Butcher) · T. reliquum (Confederate Wakerobin) · T. reliquum f. luteum (Relic Trillium) · T. rivale (Brook Wakerobin) · T. rugelii (Ill-Scented Wakerobin) · T. sessile (Common Toad Shade) · T. simile (Jeweled Wake Robin) · T. stamineum (Blue Ridge Wakerobin) · T. sulcatum (Barksdales Trillium) · T. texanum (Texas Trillium) · T. tschonoskii (Tschonoskis Wake Robin) · T. underwoodii (Lonbract Wakerobin) · T. undulatum (Painted Trillium) · T. vaseyi (Sweet Wakerobin) · T. viride (Wood Wakerobin) · T. viridescens (Tapertip Wakerobin)
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- Vascular plants of the Sangamon River basin; annotated checklist and ecological summary [by] Almut G. Jones and David T. Bell. [Urbana], University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, College of Agriculture,  url p. 3.
- Who's who among the wild flowers / compiled and illustrated by W. I. Beecroft; with an introd. by Frances Duncan. New York: Moffat, Yard, 1910. url p. 192, p. 360.
- Who's who among the wild flowers; comp. and illustrated by W. I. Beecroft, with an introduction by Frances Duncan. New York, Moffat, Yard and company, 1910. url p. 192, p. 360.
- Wild flower families; the haunts, characters, and family relationships of the herbaceous wild flowers, with suggestions for their identification, & London, J. B. Lippincott Company, 1908. url .
- Berg, R. Y. 1958. Seed dispersal, morphology, and phylogeny of Trillium. Skr. Norske Vidensk.-Akad. Oslo, Mat.-Natkurvidensk. Kl. 1958(1): 1-36.
- Case, F. W. and G. L. Burrows. 1962. The genus Trillium in Michigan: Some problems of distribution and taxonomy. Pap. Michigan Acad. Sci. 47: 180-200.
- Case, F. W. and R. B. Case. 1997. Trilliums. Portland. Gates, R. R. 1917b. A systematic study of the North American genus Trillium, its variability and its relation to Paris and Medeola. Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 4: 43-92.
- Kato, H. et al. 1995. Evolutionary biology of Trillium and related genera (Trilliaceae). 1. Restriction site mapping and variation of chloroplast DNA and its systematic implications. Pl. Spec. Biol. 10: 7-30.
- Kazempour Osaloo, S., F. H. Utech, M. Ohara, and S. Kawano. 1999. Molecular systematics of Trilliaceae I. Phylogenetic analyses of Trillium using matK gene sequences. J. Pl. Res. 112: 35-49.
- Samejima, K. and J. Samejima. 1987. Trillium Genus Illustrated. Sapporo.
- Brands, S.J. (comp.) 1989-present. The Taxonomicon. Universal Taxonomic Services, Zwaag, The Netherlands. Accessed January 9, 2012.
Accessed through GBIF Data Portal November 22, 2007:
- Missouri Botanical Garden, Missouri Botanical Garden
- USDA PLANTS, USDA PLANTS Database
- University of Alabama Biodiversity and Systematics, Herbarium
- Biodiversity Heritage Library NamebankID: 2662671
- Catalogue of Life Accepted Name Code: Kew-290630
- Global Biodiversity Information Facility Taxonkey: 13754703
- Globally Unique Identifier: urn:lsid:ipni.org:names:542592-1
- Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS) Taxonomic Serial Number (TSN): 43059
- International Plant Names Index (IPNI) ID: 258362-2
- MoBot NameID: 18401377
- U.S.D.A. Plant Symbol: TRRE5
- Zipcode Zoo Species Identifier: 64958
- Frederick W. Case Jr. "Trillium". in Flora of North America Vol. 26 Page 51, 54, 56, 90, 91, 97, 101, 110, 113, 150. Oxford University Press. Online at EFloras.org. [back]
- "Trillium recurvatum". in Flora of North America Vol. 26 Page 91, 94, 114, 115. Oxford University Press. Online at EFloras.org. [back]