Ontario Wildflowers website

White Trout Lily
Erythronium albidum

White Trout Lily (Erythronium albidum) Other common names: White Adder's Tongue, White Dogtooth Violet, White Fawnlily

Family: Lily Family (Liliaceae)

Group: Trout Lillies

Distinctive features: The white flowers are among the first to bloom in the spring. Mottled small pointy leaves.

Similar species:
  •   Trout Lily (Erythronium americanum) - Yellow flowers, similar habitat.

Flowers: Spring;  White;  6 parts (petals);  Solitary white nodding flowers. Very photogenic!

Leaves: One or two per plant. Stiff, upright, 3-8" long. Mottled like a trout fish skin (hence the name).

Height: 7-20 cm (3-8 in)

Stem: None, except for the flower: smooth.

Fruit/Seeds: In a capsule, maturing as the rest of the plant dies off.

Habitat: Forests;  Forests.

Lifespan: Perennial.  Disappears by early summer, to reappear the next spring.

Edible: The corms (tubers) are edible raw.

Books: Newcomb's Wildflower Guide: 338    Peterson's Field Guide to Wildflowers: 10    ROM Field Guide to Wildflowers of Ontario: 73   

Native/Non-native: Native

Status: Relatively rare: not as common as the yellow-flowered.

Notes: These are extremely photogenic plants that dapple the early spring woods with their beautiful flowers.

Origin and Meaning of Names:
 Scientific Name: albidum: white

Photographs: 137 photographs available, of which 8 are featured on this page. SCROLL DOWN FOR PHOTOGRAPHS.

Range Map is at the bottom of the page

White Trout Lily (Erythronium albidum) flower

The beautiful White Trout Lily flower!

White Trout Lily (Erythronium albidum) flower

Here is a "regular" Trout Lily with a White Trout Lily nearby. As you can see, they are essentially the same, except for the colour of their flowers.

The two species generally like the same habitat. However, the White Trout Lily is much less common than the yellow species.

White Trout Lily (Erythronium albidum) flower

White Trout Lily (Erythronium albidum) flower

White Trout Lily (Erythronium albidum) flower

White Trout Lily (Erythronium albidum) flower

A partially opened flower. Very "graceful" looking.

White Trout Lily (Erythronium albidum) flower bud

A White Trout Lily flower bud just emerging from its protective sheath of leaves.

White Trout Lily (Erythronium albidum) flower bud

Flower just starting to open.

Range map for White Trout Lily (Erythronium albidum)

PLEASE NOTE: A coloured Province or State means this species occurs somewhere in that Province/State.
The entire Province/State is coloured, regardless of where in that Province/State it occurs.

(Range map provided courtesy of the USDA website and is displayed here in accordance with their Policies)