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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Tennessee Wildflowers Blooming (False Garlic)

Here is another little Tennessee wildflower I found over the weekend. It was located very close to the Yellow Corydalis and was thriving in that same environment. This particular wildflower is called False Garlic (Northoscordum bivalve). Here in the first picture you can see a blossom just starting to come out.

This little flower grows from 4 to 12 inches tall and comes from a coated bulb. It is very prevalent in Middle Tennessee and ranges from southeast Virginia to Kansas and further south.

False garlic can be found in open woodlands, in fields and around limestone outcroppings. If you look in the background of the picture you can see the limestone outcropping where I found this plant.

Wildflowers of Tennessee by Jack B. Carman


  1. so is it a wildflower or a weed we are calling a wildflower?

    i see you made the top eight on digindirt again! go dave!

  2. Hmmm, I grew up in Nashville but don't remember ever seeing this one. I'll have to keep an eye out for it next time I'm home around this time of year!

  3. I can't wait to be able to stroll through the woods and waterways in search of wildflowers this summer. This little plant is lovely.

  4. Dave,

    That is a fabulous wildflower and here I go again...very happy in the Central Basin and thin dry soils of drum roll....tada....cedar glades!

    In case you are interested take a look at Wildflowers of the Central South by Thomas Hemmerly!


    ps nice honor and well deserved.

  5. Well, isn't that a pretty little thing?~~Dee

  6. Tina,

    Hmm, wildflower or weed. This one isn't like wild onions or anything in the lawn. It's just a little flower in the woods, so I'll go with wildflower. Of course beauty is in the eye of the beholder. What is a weed to one could be a flower to another.


    Take a walk in cedar glades near limestone outcroppings and you may find it. Where in Nashville did you grow up?


    That's one advantage of a southern climate I suppose. You can get outside earlier!


    I thought you might like this one! I'll have to check out that book. :)


    I thought so too! It might look good popping up around muscari or crocuses.

  7. wildflower it is! i am learning lots from you and will look for this soon. was missing your posts this morning. glad you are back!

  8. Thanks for sharing your wildflower pics from good ol' Tennessee. Fellow blotanist, here...been going on wildflower hunts, myself (in California). Is there a reason for the false garlic name?

  9. Desiree,

    I'm not really sure where the name came from unless it was the similarities between the bulbs. I know that the False Garlic bulbs don't have the same scent. The foliage looks similar. The leaves shoot up from the base of the plant. Someone may have once thought it looked like garlic then discovered is wasn't!


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