Page authors: Don Knoke, David Giblin
Lysichiton americanus
skunk cabbage, yellow skunk cabbage

Distribution: Occurring on both sides of the Cascades crest in Washington; Alaska to California, east to northern Idaho and western Montana.

Habitat: Marshes, swamps, and forested wetlands from sea level to middle elevations in the mountains.

Flowers: March-July

Origin: Native

Growth Duration: Perennial

Conservation Status: Not of concern

Pollination: Beetles


Glaucous, fleshy, acaulescent perennials from a short, upright stem, with a skunky odor.


Leaves large, fleshy, lanceolate to oblong-ovate, 4-10 dm. long.


Flowers perfect, small, embedded in a fleshy axis 6-8 cm. long and 1-2 cm. thick, the axis subtended and nearly surrounded by a large, yellow bract up to 2 dm. long; perianth 4-lobed, greenish-yellow; stamens 4; stigma capitate.


Fruit berry-like, 1- or 2-seeded.

Accepted Name:
Lysichiton americanus Hulten & H. St. John
Publication: Svensk Botanisk Tidskrift. 25:455. (as Lysichitum americanum). 1931.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
Lysichitum americanum Hultén & H. St. John, orthographic variant [HC]
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Lysichiton americanus in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database

WA Flora Checklist: Lysichiton americanus checklist entry

OregonFlora: Lysichiton americanus information

E-Flora BC: Lysichiton americanus atlas page

CalPhotos: Lysichiton americanus photos

62 photographs:
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