Ontario Wildflowers website

Blue Cohosh
Caulophyllum giganteum

Blue Cohosh (Caulophyllum giganteum) Other common names: Purple-flowered Blue Cohosh

French names: Caulophylle

Family: Barberry Family (Berberidaceae)

Distinctive features: Dark stems and leaves, at first. Blue berries.

Similar species:
  •   Blue Cohosh (Caulophyllum thalictroides) - Very similar, has greenish flowers which bloom with the leaves.

Flowers: Spring;  Red/Pink;  6 parts (petals)

Habitat: Wet Areas

Native/Non-native: Native

Notes: There are two species of Blue Cohosh: Caulophyllum giganteum (this one) and Caulophyllum thalictroides. Caulophyllum giganteum (the one on this page) generally has dark purple/red flowers which open with or before the leaves. Caulophyllum thalictroides has lighter greenish flowers which bloom after the leaves have opened.

Photographs: 280 photographs available, of which 8 are featured on this page. SCROLL DOWN FOR PHOTOGRAPHS.

Range Map is at the bottom of the page

Blue Cohosh (Caulophyllum giganteum)

The flowers of this species of Blue Cohosh are blooming before the leaves open.

Blue Cohosh (Caulophyllum giganteum)

Blue Cohosh (Caulophyllum giganteum)


Blue Cohosh (Caulophyllum giganteum)

Closer view of a flower.

Blue Cohosh (Caulophyllum giganteum)

The distinctive dark purple flowers. This species of Blue Cohosh blooms before the leaves are unfurled.

Blue Cohosh (Caulophyllum giganteum)

Leaves when they're still rather dark, as they unfurl. Later in the season they turn green.

Blue Cohosh (Caulophyllum giganteum)

Leaves just unfurling.

Blue Cohosh (Caulophyllum giganteum)

The blue berries (not edible).

Range map for Blue Cohosh (Caulophyllum giganteum)

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)