Mayapple

Also known as Barberry or Mandrake

Berberidaceae

Mayapple


Found in woods, open fields, and pastures in southern Canada and the United States, Mayapple usually grows in groups, with plants being very close together. The unripe fruit, stems, flowers, leaves, and rootstock contain podophyllin, a resinoid which can cause symptoms of poisoning such as vomiting and diarrhea. There is little danger of poisoning unless the unripe fruit is eaten in great quantities. It is assumed that toxic effects on cell changes could result in fetal deformities if eaten when pregnant.