What’s in Bloom | Mayapple
May 4, 2021
Mayapple (Podophyllum peltatum) is a perennial herb that can be recognized by its distinctive peltate, or umbrella-like, leaves. It is found in rich woodlands and will form large colonies by sprouting new plants along its creeping rhizomes. Young plants will only have one leaf, while mature plants will have two leaves borne on a Y-shaped stem.
Mayapples are named for their single, sweet-smelling, apple-blossom-like flowers that bloom from the center of their Y-shaped stems from March through May.
Benefits to Biodiversity | Mayapples are pollinated by long-tongued bees and bumblebees. The toxic foliage discourages grazing by herbivores, but the ripe fruits are eaten and dispersed by deer and box turtles.