E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia

Maianthemum dilatatum (Alph. Wood) A. Nelson & J.F. Macbr.
false lily-of-the-valley (false lily of the valley; two-leaved false Solomon's-seal)
(Previously in Liliaceae)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Jamie Fenneman  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #7462)

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Distribution of Maianthemum dilatatum
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Species Information

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Perennial herb from a slender rhizome; stems 10-35 cm tall, smooth.
Leaves of flowering stems 1 to 3 (usually 2), alternate, broadly heart- to arrowhead-shaped, distinctly heart-shaped at the base, 5-12 cm long, about as wide, on 2- to 10-cm long stalks, smooth above and beneath, the margins entire, rough short-hairy; basal leaves lacking.
Inflorescence a loose, cylindrical, terminal cluster of several to many spreading flowers; flowers cream to white, wheel-shaped, 5-8 mm across, of 4 similar, distinct tepals, the tepals oblong, blunt, 2- 3 mm long, becoming reflexed; stamens 4, shorter than tepals; pistil 1, 2-chambered.
Berries, globe-shaped, spotted, red, 5-6 mm wide; seeds 1 to 4.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Mesic to wet forests and streambanks in the lowland and montane zones; common in coastal BC; N to AK and S to ID and CA.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Ecological Framework for Maianthemum dilatatum

The table below shows the species-specific information calculated from
original data (BEC database) provided by the BC Ministry of Forests and Range.
(Updated August, 2013)

Site Information
Value / Class




Elevation (metres) 0 147 1310
Slope Gradient (%) 0 17 350
Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]
0 75 360
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
0 4 8
Modal Nutrient Regime
Number of field plots
 species was recorded in:
Modal BEC Zone Class
All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in: BWBS(28), CDF(80), CWH(1634), ESSF(1), ICH(2), IDF(2), MH(25), MS(1), PP(1), SBS(5)

Ecological Indicator Information

A shade-tolerant and ocean spray-tolerant, submontane to subalpine, Western North American forb distributed more in the Pacific than the Cordilleran region. Occurs in cool mesothermal climates on very moist to wet, nitrogen-rich soils (Moder or Mull humus forms); its occurrence decreases with increasing elevation and continentality. Scattered to plentiful in coniferous and broad-leaved forĀ­ests on water-receiving and water-collecting sites, commonly found on stream-edge sites, floodplains, and sites affected by ocean spray. Grows with Blechnum spicant, Polystichum munitum, Tiarella trifoliata, 7rautvetteria caroliniensis, and Lysichitum americanum. Characteristic of alluvial floodplain forests.

SourceIndicator Plants of Coastal British Columbia (Information applies to coastal locations only)


The climate type for this species, as reported in the: "British Columbia plant species codes and selected attributes. Version 6 Database" (Meidinger et al. 2008), is cool mesothermal.

Synonyms and Alternate Names

Maianthemum bifolium subsp. kamtschaticum (J.F. Gmel. ex Cham.) E. Murray
Maianthemum bifolium var. kamtschaticum (J.F. Gmel. ex Cham.) Trautv. & C.A. Mey.
Maianthemum kamtschaticum (J.F. Gmel. ex Cham.) Nakai

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References