Plant of the Month for October 2015

Paris quadrifolia
Paris quadrifolia

Description and General Information:

Paris quadrifolia is a woodland plant native across Eurasia from Spain to northern China.  Plants reach 15-35 cm and produce a whorl of four leaves, very similar to Trillium, but the latter has a whorl of three leaves.  The flowers of Paris are solitary with four narrow thread-like green petals and four slightly wider green petaloid sepals.  After pollination, plants produce a solitary blueberry-like fruit.

In the wild, this species always grows over limestone, in old woodlands or along streamsides where the soil is moist and organic-rich.  It is hardy to zone 4.


Paris prefers a shady location with organic-rich, evenly moist soil.  The pH should be near neutral. Paris resent transplanting so it is best to start with a young plant and leave it once planted.

Blooming Period:

In the wild, plants bloom throughout May and June.


Division, seed


Fresh seed is best, sowing them in fall and over-wintering them in a cold-frame.  The first season, plants produce roots but do not sprout above-ground until their second year.  They generally take 4-5 years to reach flowering-size.


Established clumps may be dug in early spring or late summer, and the thick rhizomes cut into pieces, each with a growing "eye".


Not applicable


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