False Solomon’s Seal

False Solomon (Maianthemum racemosum)
Maianthemum racemosum

False Solomon’s seal is a clump-forming perennial which typically grows 2-3′ tall and slowly spreads by thick rhizomes, often forming large colonies in the wild. Features unbranched, gracefully arching stems of alternate, oval, pointed, light green leaves with conspicuously parallel veins. Tiny, fragrant, creamy white flowers appear at the stem ends in terminal, plumy, spirea-like racemes (hence the species name) in spring.

Flowers are followed by greenish berries which turn an attractive ruby red in summer, often persisting into fall unless earlier consumed by wildlife. Foliage turns yellow in fall. Foliage resembles that of the true Solomon’s seals (Polygonatum spp.), but the latter have distinctly different flowers (i.e., bell-shaped flowers which droop from the leaf axils all along the stems).


  • Light Requirements: Part Shade, Full Shade
  • Water Requirements: Moist
  • Ease of Growing: Easy to grow
  • Growth Rate: Moderate
  • Spreads:
  • Wildlife Support: Pest-eating Insects, Birds or Mammals
  • Edible:
  • Mature Height: 1-3ft
  • Mature Width: 1-2ft