Botanical Name:Xanthorhiza simplicissima Common Name:
Drooping clusters of brownish-purple flowers. Not very showy.
Bright green leaves on the upper portion of the stem. Fall color varies from yellow to purple.
Pale brown clusters of single, dry capsules.
Low spreading shrub. Forms a colony of individual unbranched stems that are connected as a mass at ground level.
2 to 3 feet tall and spreading freely from suckers.
Partial sun to full shade.
Eastern portion of the United States from New York to Florida.
Found growing naturally along streamsides and other moist areas.
Description: This is an excellent deciduous ground cover for damp areas. I've read in the literature that the leaves are described as celery-like, and I couldn't describe them any better - they definitely look the same. It only grows approximately 2 to 3 feet in height although in many cases it might stay lower than that. It will make a wonderful ground cover for any damp area and spreads quite rapidly. Being a native of eastern United States, it is also a good understory plant for the native plant garden. The roots are indeed yellow, and I understand the Native Americans used these roots to produce a yellow dye. This is another plant that is not too well known and is under used. Think of it when you need a damp area ground cover.