Trillium grandiflorum (Great White Trillium, Wood Lilly)

Botanical Information

CategoryBulbs, Perennials, Wildflowers & Weeds
OriginEastern North America and Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada. The genus name comes from the Greek word 'tris', meaning thrice, in reference to both leaves and parts of the flower existing in threes.


USDA Hardiness Zone4 - 8
USDA Hardiness Ref.
Canadian Hardiness Zone2a - 8a
Canada Hardiness Ref.
RHS Hardiness ZoneH4 - H7
RHS Hardiness Ref.
Temperature (°C)-35 - (-7)
Temperature (°F)-30 - 20
Height30 - 45 cm
Spread20 - 30 cm
Flowering PeriodMay

Description and Growing Information

General DescriptionTrillium grandiflorum is a low-lying, rhizomatous perennial wildflower with three creamy white, distinctly veined petals and yellow stamens.
LandscapeA natural choice for woodland gardens. Also does well in a peat terrace or pocket planting in rock gardens.
PropagationBy careful division and replanting when leaves have died down. Can also be propagated by fresh seed, cleaned and sown 15 mm deep in a propagating mix with leafmould and kept in a cool, shady frame. Plants propagated from seed take about 5 years to flower.
CultivationGrow in part shade, in moist, well-drained, slightly alkaline, well-aerated, humusy (leafmould is preferable) soil. Tolerates sun when soil is consistently moist and shaded during the hottest part of the day.
Notable SpecimensThe A.M. Cuddy Gardens, Strathroy, Ontario, Canada.
HabitatMoist woodland and scrub, often on limestone formations.
Leaf DescriptionGreen, soft, glabrous, glossy, ovate to orbicular, apex acute or obtuse, margins slightly undulate, main venation longitudinal with a network of smaller veins (reticulate), in a group of three arranged in an apical whorl spread larger than the bloom.
Flower DescriptionSolitary, terminal, erect on pedicels up to 5 cm long, three lanceolate, dark green sepals up to 5 cm long, petals are white when young, turning a pale pink, broad-ovate and 4 - 8 cm long depending on age and vigor, curving outward, undulate, distinctly veined, anthers are golden yellow. Flowers are odourless.
Fruit DescriptionBerries are scarlet to maroon, glabrous, tri-valved.