Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Virginia Bunchflower
Melanthium virginicum

Family: Melanthiaceae
Genus: Melanthium (mel-AN-thee-um) (Info)
Species: virginicum (vir-JIN-ih-kum) (Info)

Synonym:Melanthium dispersum
Synonym:Veratrum virginicum

3 vendors have this plant for sale.

2 members have or want this plant for trade.


36-48 in. (90-120 cm)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

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)

Sun Exposure:
Sun to Partial Shade

Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:
Pale Green
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Late Spring/Early Summer
Mid Summer


Other details:
Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings
This plant may be considered a protected species; check before digging or gathering seeds

Soil pH requirements:
Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
Unknown - Tell us

Seed Collecting:
Unknown - Tell us

Click thumbnail
to view:

By KSBaptisia
Thumbnail #1 of Melanthium virginicum by KSBaptisia

By KSBaptisia
Thumbnail #2 of Melanthium virginicum by KSBaptisia


1 positive
1 neutral
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Neutral coriaceous On May 31, 2014, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

It's hard to believe that such a small plant can produce such a huge floral display. From a rosette of green grass-like leaves a foot high emerges a well branched flower stalk that can reach 5', June-August. Flowers are small but numerous and lasting for months, white or cream at first, slowly aging to green and sometimes blackish purple. Slightly malodorous.

This is a meadow plant native to eastern and central North America. It tolerates dry conditions but prefers regular moisture. Performs well under ordinary border conditions. Blooms most years if well fed.

Propagated by seed. It takes several years for plants to reach blooming size, and the floral display increases for several years more.

Positive KSBaptisia On Jun 23, 2009, KSBaptisia from Beatrice, NE (Zone 5b) wrote:

Great native "lily". Pretty easy to grow so long as you give it a moist spot. Gradually goes dormant after flowering in early summer.


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

Roslindale, Massachusetts
Beatrice, Nebraska
Leesburg, Virginia

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