lily of the valley

lily of the valley, common name for either of the two species of Convallaria, spring-blooming perennials of the family Liliaceae (lily family). C. majalis, the species usually in cultivation, is native to Eurasia; C. montana, a slightly larger plant, grows in the Appalachian Mts. Lilies of the valley live in shady places and have delicate bell-shaped, fragrant white flowers growing on a stalk between two shiny leaves. The plant was long used medicinally for cardiac disorders and contains poisonous substances. It is a symbol of humility in religious painting. Lily of the valley is classified in the division Magnoliophyta, class Liliopsida, order Liliales, family Liliaceae.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

More on lily of the valley from Fact Monster:

  • mayflower, in botany - mayflower mayflower, in botany, name for several spring-blooming plants. In England the hawthorn is ...
  • Say It with Flowers - Say It with Flowers If you send someone a single rose you are sending a message of love. You can ...
  • Plants that Kill - Plants that Kill —By Arden Dore Have you ever heard the saying “Don’t judge a ...
  • poisonous plant - poisonous plant poisonous plant, any plant possessing a property injurious to man or animal. Plants ...
  • lily: Common Species - Common Species The name lily is used chiefly for plants of the genus Lilium and related species but ...

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Plants