Perennial herb from a stout, fleshy, knotty, brownish rhizome; stems erect to stiffly arched-ascending, 30-100 cm tall, finely spreading-hairy above.
Stem leaves 5 to 12, alternate often in two rows, oblong-elliptic to egg-shaped, tapering to a frequently clasping base, 5-20 cm long, 4-8 cm wide, unstalked or short-stalked, short stiff-hairy on undersurface, the margins entire; basal leaves lacking.
Inflorescence a branched, egg- or pyramid-shaped, (3) 5- to 12-cm long, terminal cluster of numerous, spreading, short-stalked flowers; flowers white, wheel-shaped, of 6 similar, distinct tepals, the tepals 1.5-3 mm long, narrowly oblong; stamens 6, longer and wider than tepals; pistil 1, 3-chambered.
Berries, globe-shaped, at first mottled green and red, eventually all red, 5-7 mm wide; seeds usually 1 or 2.
If more than one illustration is available for a species (e.g., separate illustrations were provided for two subspecies) then links to the separate images will be provided below. Note that individual subspecies or varietal illustrations are not always available.
Illustration Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia
||Value / Class
Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
of field plots
species was recorded in:
BEC Zone Class
All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in
Source: Klinkenberg 2013
Synonyms and Alternate Names:
Maianthemum amplexicaule (Nutt.) W.A. Weber
Maianthemum racemosum var. amplexicaule (Nutt.) Dorn
Smilacina amplexicaulis Nutt.
Smilacina amplexicaulis var. glabra J.F. Macbr.
Smilacina amplexicaulis var. jenkinsii Boivin
Smilacina amplexicaulis var. ovata Boivin
Smilacina racemosa var. amplexicaulis (Nutt.) S. Watson
Smilacina racemosa var. brachystyla G. Henderson
Smilacina racemosa var. glabra (J.F. Macbr.) St. John
Smilacina racemosa var. jenkinsii (Boivin) Boivin
Vagnera amplexicaulis (Nutt.) Greene
Vagnera amplexicaulis var. glabra (J.F. Macbr.) Abrams