Plant Profile: Lily of the Valley

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Lily of the Valley is an early blooming spring plant that can be very invasive.  It will soon be poking through the ground and growing after being dormant all winter.

The shoots poke out of the ground about the beginning of May.  Here is a clump  growing in a shady area by the front path last May, about mid month.

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By the end of the month the leaves had spread open and the flower spikes were showing.

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This is a sweetly scented but poisonous plant.  It spreads rapidly via rhizomes often called pips .  I chuckle to myself when I see the plant being sold as I think I must have hundreds of dollars of it in my garden.  I give it away or just dig it up as it invades other places in the garden where I don’t want it.

The blooms are about 5-10 mm and resemble little bells. You can cut the stems to make little bunches of lovely smelling flowers to take inside. When the blooms are finished small red/orange berries form.

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I love macro photos and always try to get shots from different angles.

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Have you ever looked inside a lily of the valley bloom?  Just look at the pretty markings and colours that are rarely seen.

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At the end of the season the leaves and stems die away and the plant goes dormant.  In the fall is the best time to dig the rhizomes and move them or share them with others.

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This May if you come across a clump of lily of the valley, be sure to stop and enjoy the tiny little blooms with the big scent and take a peek inside the individual little bell flower.

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