Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Spring Beauty, Good Morning Spring, Virginia Springbeauty
Claytonia virginica

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Family: Portulacaceae
Genus: Claytonia (klay-TOH-nee-uh) (Info)
Species: virginica (vir-JIN-ih-kuh) (Info)

Synonym:Claytonia virginica var. virginica

2 vendors have this plant for sale.

25 members have or want this plant for trade.

Category:
Perennials

Height:
6-12 in. (15-30 cm)

Spacing:
6-9 in. (15-22 cm)

Hardiness:
USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)
USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)
USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)
USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)
USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

Sun Exposure:
Sun to Partial Shade

Danger:
N/A

Bloom Color:
Rose/Mauve
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Late Winter/Early Spring
Mid Spring

Foliage:
Herbaceous

Other details:
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:
Non-patented

Propagation Methods:
From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

Seed Collecting:
Bag seedheads to capture ripening seed
Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds
Seed does not store well; sow as soon as possible

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There are a total of 40 photos.
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Profile:

11 positives
2 neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

RatingAuthorContent
Positive sladeofsky On Mar 9, 2007, sladeofsky from Louisville, KY (Zone 6b) wrote:

I come from a long line of coal miners from the Appalachian foothills of Eastern Kentucky. Indeed "miner's lettuce" is an appropriate common name as it was one of the favorite seasonal foods of the area. The common coloquial name there however was "tangle gut." It was almost always served Killed which means to pour hot oil over the fresh greens and toss and serve quickly. It was usualy bacon grease with a few crumbles of bacon left for extra flavor and chopped spring green onions, salt and pepper. I'm feeling both nostalgic and hungry thinking about it. I fondly recall my family going into the hills for hours collecting huge sacks of tangle gut and morel mushrooms. I find it funny that not only are most species of claytonia eaten by local populations, but that they are usually miners. Perhaps because miners are more likely to be trapsing through the areas where it grows. As for the bulb, we were taught its usefullness as a starvation food, but they were not commonly collected.

Positive bluespiral On Feb 23, 2007, bluespiral from (Zone 7a) wrote:

Here is an addendum on germinating seeds of Claytonia virginica from the 2nd edition of Norman C. Deno's book, Seed Germination Theory and Practice -

Seed germinated for Deno equally well whether sown 70-40 (79%) or 40-70-40(78%)-70, but the seed must be fresh. Deno says that "All dry stored seed rotted and dry storage is a fatal treatment." So, this would concur with lupinelover's advice to sow freshly ripened seed where the plant is to be grown as soon as the seed ripens in early summer, as well as with the PlantFiles advice above to direct sow in the autumn.

The 70-40 means 70*F for 3 months cycled to 40*F for 3 months, and so forth. I suspect, in terms of Mother Nature in zones 5-7 at least, that the two kinds of direct sowing (one in early spring & one in the fall) will meet those requirements.

Knees, for later in the summer when the spring woodlanders have gone dormant, a pot or few among the ferns could liven things up. A very shade tolerant association I've become partial to under our magnolia combines the gray, pebbly leaves of Plectranthus argentatus with white double impatiens (looks like polyanthus roses) and coleus Magilla Perilla (splashed with cream, gray-green and deep magenta). In front of the pot, on the edge of the shadows, you could poke a few rooted cuttings of streptocarpella with its fuzzy, succulent tiny leaves and violet-blue flowers to bring the denizens of the pot down to earth.

Putting some of those hydrating crystals that absorb many times their volume in water and release the water slowly over time into the pot and planting holes might help with watering. You'd have to read the label for exact measurements of how much to mix in. The crystals should be mixed with the medium beneath the roots.

But you also could interplant a late bloomer with the early blooming spring beauty. One of the most awesomely beautiful sights DH and I ever did see was on a bright, sunny day in early April - the top of a hill on one of our walks was completed carpeted in the light-pink haze of blooming spring beauties, while metallic, black-purple leaves of bugbane (was Cimifuga racemosa but is now Actaea racemosa) were unfurling above them. All of this was under a canopy of deciduous trees - this was before the gypsy moth hit here in the 80s, so there could have been some pretty mature oaks at the time.

Positive kayaker On Jan 24, 2007, kayaker from Milton, VT (Zone 4a) wrote:

Edible Uses
Leaves; Root.
Root - raw or cooked. Rich in starch, it has a pleasant nutty flavour. A radish-like flavour when raw, it tastes like a cross between a potato and a chestnut when cooked. The root is rich in vitamins A and C.

Antispasmodic; Contraceptive.
A cold infusion or decoction of the powdered roots has been given to children with convulsions.

It has been said that eating the raw plants can permanently prevent conception

Positive Malus2006 On Mar 5, 2006, Malus2006 from Coon Rapids, MN (Zone 4a) wrote:

They will tolerate sandy soil in shade. They will spread but will get competitions from taller (and aggressive) native plants like Jack in the Puplit, and sometimes Early Meadowrue if you plant them together. Even trillium and bloodroots will give them trouble if you tried to plant them too close together. It will be nice if someone send a picture of drifts of spring beauty mixes with toothwort, wood anemone, rue anemone, (both this and false), or even oak fern!

Positive melody On Apr 3, 2005, melody from Benton, KY (Zone 7a) wrote:

A lovely little Spring wildflower that welcomes the sunshine in late March/early April here in West KY. They naturalize in great colonies across close trimmed yards and fields.

The edible tuber is about 3" below the surface of the ground, and one can judge the size of the tuber by the size of the flower rosette. It makes a clump similar to a clump of Fescue and the largest tubers are under the rosettes that are 6" or bigger.

Positive MsMaati On Oct 21, 2004, MsMaati from Newburgh, IN (Zone 6a) wrote:

They make a beautiful display in early Spring. Don't put it anywhere that you will need to mow early. They last a few weeks and you will not want to mow them down. I like the fact that they completely disapear after blooming and you get that wonderful surprise in mid April ( here in southern Indiana). I was glad that I found out what they were called.

Positive henryr10 On Sep 11, 2004, henryr10 from Cincinnati, OH (Zone 6b) wrote:

Around here it is firmly entrenched in most of the older lawns.
Never a problem.
The most beautiful sight occurs in very late
Spring/early Summer when it all flowers at once.
Suddenly it seems we've had a snowfall.
This affect lingers for several days.
Quite lovely.

Neutral sam18 On Apr 27, 2004, sam18 wrote:

all that info if fine and good but i need like the scientific name and the class and kingdom, genus, species, order, family, phylum, and all that good stuff!

and you guys just dont have it.........

sam18

Positive knees On Apr 18, 2004, knees from Washington, DC (Zone 7a) wrote:

I finally found it amongst the pictures. I consider it my alltime spring favorite; it is sprinkled all over my city front yard. I am trying to imitate a scene on the edge of the woods as well as I can manage. A huge pinoak and equally large hickory on either of the yard provide nothing but shade and dried our root systems as growing medium for those plants that manage to survive here. I think I have the most imaginative, prettiest spring front yard in the whole neighborhood, if I say so myself :>)). Now that I have discovered DG, I will try to learn all the names of the plants displayed in this lovely spring scene. Later in the year, it gets pretty boring.

Positive Terry On Aug 31, 2002, Terry from Murfreesboro, TN (Zone 7a) wrote:

I'm rating this a positive, because I see its potential. I spent a half-day digging up clumps from our backyard, with the hope that by planting them in a clump (in a BED) they'll have more impact. Because when they're mixed in with the grass, they look pretty weedy (or a pretty weed, depending on how close up you are to them.)

Positive KBlueberry On May 30, 2002, KBlueberry from Allen, MI (Zone 5a) wrote:

a native woodland plant--it is one of the first to bloom in the spring....a very pretty little plant, ours are pale pink with darker pink veins. Does not appear to be invasive, I collect the seedheads when the plant has turned yellow, and the seeds are tiny, shiny black flat seeds.

Positive lupinelover On May 6, 2002, lupinelover from Grove City, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:

Somewhat difficult to transplant. Bulbs can be dug as plant is going dormant, dried, and planted in fall in new location. They can also be dug with soil ball intact around roots as they are beginning to emerge. This is the method most likely to succeed, but typically the flowering cycle is disrupted for up to several years.

As seed is setting, flexible stem bends to the ground, and seedheads must be wrapped, otherwise seed immediately is dispersed to the soil below when it is ripe. This is the most reliable way of propagating plant; new plants germinate readily from seed planted in situ.

Neutral smiln32 On Aug 31, 2001, smiln32 from Oklahoma City, OK (Zone 7a) wrote:

Spring beauty is a delicate, much-beloved, early spring-blooming, native Missouri wildflower that typically occurs statewide in rich, moist woodlands and valleys, meadows, prairies and somewhat dry upland woods. A low-growing plant that features clusters of flowers (to 3/4" wide) with five white to pinkish petals with pink veins and pink anthers on thin stems and narrow, linear, grass-like, dark green leaves (usually in pairs). Plant typically grows to 4-6" at bloom time, but foliage continues to grow after bloom and may eventually reach 9-12" before leaves disappear in late spring to early summer as plant goes into dormancy. Naturalizes somewhat easily in agreeable environments. Small, potato-like, underground tubers (corms) are edible (chestnut-like flavor) and were in fact consumed by early Americans, but are time-consuming to collect in quantity sufficient for a meal.

Regional...

This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

,
Batesville, Arkansas
Washington, District Of Columbia
Anna, Illinois
Divernon, Illinois
Hampton, Illinois
Hinsdale, Illinois
Newburgh, Indiana
Warren, Indiana
Benton, Kentucky
Hi Hat, Kentucky
Louisville, Kentucky
Mc Dowell, Kentucky
Brookeville, Maryland
Ellicott City, Maryland
Frederick, Maryland
Gaithersburg, Maryland
Oakland, Maryland
Valley Lee, Maryland
Erie, Michigan
Midland, Michigan
Saginaw, Michigan
Sanford, Michigan
University Center, Michigan
Williamsburg, Michigan
Isle, Minnesota
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Cole Camp, Missouri
Carteret, New Jersey
Hopewell Junction, New York
Elizabeth City, North Carolina
Cincinnati, Ohio
Fremont, Ohio
Tulsa, Oklahoma
Royersford, Pennsylvania
Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania
Burns, Tennessee
Morrison, Tennessee
Murfreesboro, Tennessee
Viola, Tennessee
Clarksville, Texas
Shepherd, Texas
Milton, Vermont
Leesburg, Virginia
Kirkland, Washington
Ellsworth, Wisconsin
Menasha, Wisconsin



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