Illustrations and photos by "Wildman," clipart from Clipart.com
Although a strong cardiac stimulant has been made from the roots, this highly toxic plant can cause birth defects, gastrointestinal distress, salivation, prostration, general paralysis, spasms, irregular heart beat, difficulties breathing, and death.
False Hellebore, Immature and In Flower
Unlike the similar but less toxic, odoriferous skunk cabbage, this odorless plant has a flower stalk, plus alternative leaves that are pleated.
Lacy clusters of small yellow flowers adorning this springtime plant help decorate swamps in springtime.
False Hellebore Shoots
The characteristic pleated surface of the leaves is evident when the first shoots appear in early spring.
False Hellebore, Immature and in Flower
The alternate, oval, pointed, toothless, pleated leaves on a tall stalk make this plant quite distinct.
False Hellebore in Flower
Attractive yellow flowers blooming above the leaves adorn the cylindrical flower stalk. Note the skunk cabbage leaves, with branching veins, growing on the ground nearby.
False Hellebore Fruits
The 3 small, elongated, ovate fruits, which form in midspring, contain the plant's seeds.