Ontario Wildflowers website

Bloodroot
(Sanguinaria canadensis)

Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis) Family: Poppy Family (Papaveraceae)

Distinctive features: Deeply lobed leaves. Early spring wildflower. Conspicuous white flowers.

Similar species:
  •   Twinleaf (Jeffersonia diphylla) - Similar flowers, but it has paired leaves and is rare.


Flowers: Spring;  White;  7 or more parts (petals);  White, 8-12 petals. Early spring (April-May).

Leaves: Single leaf per plant, deeply lobed. Curled around the emerging flower, unfurling as flower blooms.

Height: 10-20 cm (3-7 in)

Stem: Roots contain a blood-red juice, hence the common name.

Habitat: Forests;  Forests.

Grows in Sun/Shade: Shade

Books: Newcomb's Wildflower Guide: 364    Peterson's Field Guide to Wildflowers: 22    ROM Field Guide to Wildflowers of Ontario: 324   

Native/Non-native: Native

Status: Common.

Origin and Meaning of Names:
 Scientific Name: : of Canada


Photographs: 329 photographs available, of which 11 are featured on this page. SCROLL DOWN FOR PHOTOGRAPHS.

Range Map is at the bottom of the page

Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis)

Bloodroot flowers are among the first to bloom in the spring. They bloom from mid-April into May.

Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis)

Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis)

There are about 8-12 petals.

Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis)

Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis)

Part of what makes these flowers so photogenic is their early appearance after the long flowerless winter.

Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis)

The flower is often fully out while the leaf is still furled around it.

Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis)

A flower bud emerging from the furled leaf.

Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis)

Flower buds rising above their plant's furled leaves.

Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis)

The leaves are deeply lobed (5-9 lobes).

Bloodroot plants often grow in little groups like this.

Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis)

Seed pod.

Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis)

Here's why the plant is called Bloodroot - the roots have a blood-red juice.


Range map for Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis)

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)