Mystery plant 070

This plant can be found in wooded areas in the southeastern United States and in mountain regions up into the northeastern U.S.  When you can identify it, leave a comment with the common name, scientific name and any personal story you may have about the plant.


Leaves in summer


Developing inflorescence in fall


Leaves in winter


Expanding flower buds in late winter


Blooming inflorescence in spring


ANSWER (subsequently added to this post to facilitate the “search” function for these images): Allegheny spurge (Pachysandra procumbens)

Also, read the blog post and watch the plant portrait video for Allegheny spurge (Pachysandra procumbens).

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6 Responses to Mystery plant 070

  1. Evan says:

    Pachysandra procumbens, Allegheny-spurge or mountain pachysandra.

    Interesting notes from Weakley (2012): “Its distribution (and, for that matter, that of the genus as a whole) appears to be relictual and to reflect a poor ability to disperse itself and colonize new territory. Channell & Wood (1987) refer to P. procumbens as a “nonaggressive if not ‘senile’ species with a very low evolutionary potential.” The only locations for this species in NC are in Polk County, NC, which has other notable disjunctions of species which normally occur west of the Blue Ridge.”

    • Angelyn says:

      Thanks, Evan. I’ve seen this plant at the Botanical Gardens in Asheville, as well as the NC Arboretum. I’ve been growing (or attempting to grow) some that I purchased. So far, after several years, it is “surviving” although I’d rather see it “thrive.”

  2. Norman Smith says:

    I’ve got a patch in a natural area under a large White Oak. Doing very well…spreads a little each year. Probably a 3X4 foot area by now. Blooms nicely. High Point, NC

  3. Dr R. K S. Rathore says:

    Yes, this is Pachysandra procumbens, of family Buxaceae. It is evergreen herb, native to southeast United States.

  4. Rachel S Dutton says:

    Pachysandra procumbens. It grows under a tree in a shaded area and spreads very slowly. Don’t know how it got started but I like it.

  5. Angelyn says:

    This is Allegheny spurge (Pachysandra procumbens). I especially enjoy its mottled leaves during the winter and spring seasons.

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