Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Toothwort
Cardamine concatenata

Family: Brassicaceae (brass-ih-KAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Cardamine (kar-DAM-ih-nee) (Info)
Species: concatenata (kon-kan-teh-NAH-tuh) (Info)

Synonym:Cardamine laciniata
Synonym:Dentaria concatenata
Synonym:Dentaria concaenata var. coalescens
Synonym:Dentaria laciniata
Synonym:Dentaria laciniata var. integra

2 vendors have this plant for sale.

5 members have or want this plant for trade.


6-12 in. (15-30 cm)

6-9 in. (15-22 cm)

USDA Zone 3a: to -39.9 C (-40 F)
USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)
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:
Light Shade

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:
Pale Pink
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Mid Spring


Other details:
Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings

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

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:
Seed does not store well; sow as soon as possible

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By gardenwife
Thumbnail #1 of Cardamine concatenata by gardenwife

By Toxicodendron
Thumbnail #2 of Cardamine concatenata by Toxicodendron

By CaptMicha
Thumbnail #3 of Cardamine concatenata by CaptMicha

By CaptMicha
Thumbnail #4 of Cardamine concatenata by CaptMicha

By Equilibrium
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By Toxicodendron
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By sladeofsky
Thumbnail #7 of Cardamine concatenata by sladeofsky

There are a total of 15 photos.
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5 positives
1 neutral
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive kydrummer On Apr 30, 2014, kydrummer from Silver Spring, MD wrote:

This plant is a caterpillar food source for the West Virginia White (threatened species) and the Falcate Orange Tip butterfly.

Positive Malus2006 On Feb 10, 2008, Malus2006 from Coon Rapids, MN (Zone 4a) wrote:

I have a small patch that I brought at a plant sale - it multiply slowly and prefer more shade. It is also hard to very hard to find in the plant trade - so far I have only found a few websites that sells it plus C. diphylla - two leaf toothwort. The few other sources where you can buy them are at spring plant sales where the seller are fellow gardeners as they are not viable for non specific nurseries as they tend to disappear when stressed or during the summer, leaving behind a dirt pot. Both are the most commonly sold native cardamine. They are really nice plants, very tame compare to the other members of the mustard family and have interesting flowers if you are willing to look up close to them. There are large patches of it in Coon Rapids Dam park in flat locations but a bit higher up - you can tell where they grow by the large amount of ground plants - very few plants grow where the floods come every five years or so.

Positive CaptMicha On Sep 14, 2005, CaptMicha from Brookeville, MD (Zone 7a) wrote:

Masses of these appear in the decidous woods around my home in the spring. Then they go dormant once the weather turns hot.

They make quite attractive white bell flowers.

I don't know of the plant serving any purpose but it is unobtrusive and dainty.

Positive Equilibrium On Dec 9, 2004, Equilibrium wrote:

Another great showy North American native woodland plant. Wonderful spring ephemeral that will ever so slowly naturalize by rhizomes to form colonies

You can pickle the plant or boil it or eat it raw with a little salt although I think it is much prettier left standing.

The plant likes rich and moist well drained soil.

Virtually no insect or disease problems.

Positive lupinelover On Apr 18, 2003, lupinelover from Grove City, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:

Volunteered for me in an area that is mostly saturated clay soil during the late winter through mid-spring in severely alkaline soil on which little else will grow.

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

Toothwort (also commonly called cut-leaved toothwort) is a Missouri native spring wildflower which occurs in rich woods and wooded slopes throughout the State and typically grows 8-15" tall. This is a spring ephemeral which blooms in early spring before the leaves emerge on deciduous trees and goes dormant by late spring to early summer. Stems rise directly from rhizomes. Each stem has a whorl of three leaves near the middle of the stem, with each leaf divided into three, narrow, sharply-toothed, lance-shaped segments. A terminal cluster of four-petaled, white flowers (sometimes with a pink blush) blooms at the top of each stem. Flower petals are arranged in the shape of a cross.


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

Washington, District Of Columbia
Louisville, Kentucky
Brookeville, Maryland
Erie, Michigan
Grand Rapids, Michigan
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Cole Camp, Missouri
Saint Louis, Missouri
Elizabeth City, North Carolina
Chesterland, Ohio
Glouster, Ohio
Grove City, Ohio
Dickson, Tennessee
Viola, Tennessee
Leesburg, Virginia

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