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Bransford, W.D. and Dolphia
Chamaelirium luteum (L.) A. Gray
Blazing star, Fairywand
Synonym(s): Chamaelirium obovale, Veratrum luteum
USDA Symbol: chlu
USDA Native Status: L48 (N), CAN (N)
A lily-like plant with a basal rosette of oval leaves and one or more, 2-3 ft. flower stalks, each topped with a spike of flowers. A wand-like stem, often drooping at tip, rising from a basal cluster of leaves and bearing a densely packed, elongated, terminal cluster of tiny white flowers. Male and female flowers are on separate plants, the male bearing a white, feathery 4-8 in. raceme and the female a shorter and more slender spike. The male flowers have a yellow tint from the color of the stamens, and the raceme, at first erect, becomes curving.
On the plants with all male flowers, yellow stamens create the creamier color of the male flower spike. This species can be readily cultivated.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Herb Leaf Complexity: Simple Flower:
Fruit: Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: White
Bloom Time: Mar , Apr , May , Jun
, WV Native Distribution: MA
to extreme s. IL,
s. to n. FL
& AR Native Habitat:
Moist, open, hardwood forests
Growing ConditionsLight Requirement: Part Shade
Soil pH: Acidic (pH<6.8)
Soil Description: Humus-rich soil.
Conditions Comments: Benefits from a winter cover of oak leaves.
National Wetland Indicator Status
This information is derived from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Wetland Plant List, Version 3.1
(Lichvar, R.W. 2013. The National Wetland Plant List: 2013 wetland ratings. Phytoneuron 2013-49: 1-241). Click here
for map of regions.
From the National Organizations Directory
According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is either on display or available from the following:
Delaware Nature Society
- Hockessin, DEMt. Cuba Center
- Hockessin, DE
Record Last Modified: 2007-01-01
Research By: TWC Staff