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For Your Garden - August 2019

Native plants provide beauty as well as food and shelter for wildlife. Native species are adapted to the Illinois climate. They require little or no watering and are resistant to drought, insects and most diseases. Because they are perennials, you can welcome their presence year after year.

starry Solomon’s-seal (Smilacina stellata)
Photo © River Valley Photographic Resources Ltd.,

Starry Solomon’s‐seal is a perennial plant that grows from thick, underground stems. Its aboveground stems are upright, unbranched, smooth or finely hairy. Leaves are alternate, lance‐shaped to oval and clasp the stem. The white flowers are arranged in a panicle at the end of the stem. The fruits are spherical, blue-black or black berries. Starry Solomon’s‐seal may be found in the northern three-fifths of Illinois plus St. Clair, Wabash and Crawford counties. This plant grows in woods and prairies. Flowers are produced from May through June.

Classification and taxonomy are based on Mohlenbrock, Robert H. 2014. Vascular flora of Illinois: A field guide. Fourth edition. Southern Illinois University Press, Carbondale. 536 pp.

Illinois Range

Native Plant Information

For more information about Illinois native plants, visit our Native Habitat Descriptions, Requirements, and Plant Lists page. The following publications are available from the IDNR on our publications page.


Kingdom: Plantae
Phylum: Magnoliophyta
Class: Liliopsida
Order: Liliales
Family: Ruscaceae

Illinois Status: common, native