Mayapple Plant
Flower bud forming ...
Mayapple Flower
Podophyllum peltatum

Fruit is edible but other parts of this plant are poisonous!

Common Names
Common mayapple, devil's apple, duck's foot, ground lemon, hog apple, Indian apple, mandrake, mayapple, podophyllum, racoonberry, umbrella plant, vegetable calomel, vegetable mercury, wild jalap, wild lemon, wild mandrake, yellowberry.

An erect perennial that grows to about 1 to 11/2 feet in height. Two umbrella-like, palmately lobed leaves grow at the top of each plant, rarely 3. The plant produces a white flower in fork of leaves, and ovate yellow fruit.

Flowering Period
March to May

Deciduous forest in mountain areas, rich woods, thickets, and pastures; prefers shade.

Rootstock in fall and sometimes in spring before leaves appear

Edible Uses:
The fruit may be eaten raw after it is ripened by frost, but not everyone enjoys the flavor. Ripened fruit is cooked into jam or jelly.

Improper use of this plant could be very dangerous. The roots and rhizomes are used as a purgative. A resin from the plant, called padophyllin, has been used to treat venereal warts. The resin is extremely allergenic; it exhibits anti-tumor activity. In Appalacia, a tea of bark and roots is used to treat constipation.

Externally, mayapple is used as a treatment for warts and skin eruptions. Internally, a very small amount of root may be used as a cathartic (Laxative), a worm expellant, for jaundice, constipation, hepatitis, fever and syphilis.

Kingdom Plantae -- Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta -- Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta -- Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta -- Flowering plants
Class Magnoliopsida -- Dicotyledons
Subclass Magnoliidae
Order Ranunculales
Family Berberidaceae -- Barberry family
Genus Podophyllum L. -- mayapple P
Species Podophyllum hexandrum Royle -- Himalayan mayapple P

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