By William T. Hathaway

Troutlily (Erythronium americanum)

The Troutlily (Erythronium americanum) blooms locally from early March until April. Occasionally on warm days in late February they may flower before their usual time. Troutlilies prefer rich woodlands on the sunny side of a hill before the deciduous trees have developed leaves.

Many wildflower gardeners have been tempted to plant this beautiful little species, but it takes an average of 4 years to develop from seeds to flowers. Digging up its corms is discouraging, since the delicate root system is often hugging against surrounding rocks.

Although perhaps not comparable to the biblical “Lilies of the Fields,” this lily of the woods sheds its beauty in our local woodlands.