The scent of Trillium

John Lonsdale
Tue, 09 May 2006 07:54:42 PDT

On Mon, 8 May 2006 23:35:39 EDT wrote:

> Close by is T. decipiens.  Equally beautiful foliage 
>with intense mottling, 
> the stems reach about 7-8".  I provide two photos, 
>showing two dark red forms, 
> each with different mottling, and a coppery-olive 
>flowered form with lighter 
> mottling.  The red forms have no detectable scent when I 
>sniffed (although, 
> they had just begun to open), whereas the coppery-olive 
>flowered form had a 
> strong yet hard to pinpoint aroma... sort of sweet yet 
>at the same time 
> turpentine-like. Peculiar and intriguing.

When you go into a woodland with Trillium decipiens 
present, and the temperature is up in the 70s and 80s (as 
it often is in late February and early March when they are 
flowering in SW Georgia and S Alabama) the scent is 
amazing.  I hadn't pinned it down to color forms as Mark 
has interestingly done, but the smell of ripe bananas is 
overpowering.  It is great that these Deep South plants 
are doing so well in MA.



John T Lonsdale PhD
407 Edgewood Drive,
Exton, Pennsylvania 19341, USA

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