All parts of the plant are highly toxic
There are no edible uses listed for Melanthium virginicum.
There are no material uses listed for Melanthium virginicum.
The root has been used to kill internal parasites
Unless the seed is stored in damp sand at around 4°c it has a short viability
. Where possible it is best to sow the seed in a lightly shaded position in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe
. Stored seed needs to be cold stratified but can be very slow to germinate. Germination can be erratic even for seed sown when it was fresh, it usually takes place within 3 - 12 months at 15°c but can be much longer
. Sow the seed thinly so that it can be grown on in the pot without disturbance for the first couple of years. Give an occasional liquid feed in the growing season to ensure the plants do not become nutrient deficient. The plant produces just one seed leaf in its first year, this forms an over-wintering bulb. At the end of the second year's growth, pot up the over-wintering bulbs, placing one or two bulbs in each pot. Grow them on in a lightly shaded position in a cold frame for at least another couple of years before planting them out into their permanent positions. It takes up to 10 years for the plant to reach maturity
Division in March/April or in October. Establish the plants in pots in a shaded frame before planting them out.
Root cuttings, 6mm long with a bud, rooted in a sandy soil in a cold frame
Practical Plants is currently lacking information on propagation instructions of Melanthium virginicum. Help us fill in the blanks! Edit this page to add your knowledge.
Requires a deep fertile moisture retentive humus-rich soil
. Succeeds in full sun if the soil does not dry out but prefers a position in semi-shade
. Dislikes dry soils
. Grows best in a cool woodland garden or a north facing border
. Succeeds in acid soils in a bog garden
Problems, pests & diseases
Associations & Interactions
There are no interactions listed for Melanthium virginicum. Do you know of an interaction that should be listed here? edit this page to add it.
Polycultures & Guilds
There are no polycultures listed which include Melanthium virginicum.
This table shows all the data stored for this plant.
Material uses & Functions
Native Climate Zones
Adapted Climate Zones
Native Geographical Range
Root Zone Tendancy
? 1.01.11.2 Coffey. T. The History and Folklore of North American Wild Flowers. Facts on File. ISBN 0-8160-2624-6 (1993-00-00)
? 2.02.12.22.188.8.131.52.72.82.9 Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992. MacMillan Press ISBN 0-333-47494-5 (1992-00-00)
? 3.03.1 Grey. C. H. Hardy Bulbs. Williams & Norgate. (1938-00-00)
? McGregor. R. L. & Barkley. T. M. Flora of the Great Plains. University Press of Kansas. ISBN 070060295x (1986-00-00)