New York Natural Heritage Program
Fairy Wand
Chamaelirium luteum (L.) Gray
Monocots

General Description [-]
This attractive wildflower has a single flower stalk growing up to a meter tall from a rosette of 5-10 lance-shaped leaves 8-15 cm long. There are also a few narrow leaves along the flower stalk. Above these leaves is a long spike of tiny white flowers that are either male or female and turn yellow as they age. The female flowers mature into small, erect, oval, green fruits.

Best Life Stage for Proper Identification [-]
The best stage for identifying this plant is while it is in flower; however, it can be identified vegetatively.

Similar Species [-]
When in flower, not likely to be confused with other species. Vegetatively, this may look like a number of other liliaceous plants to somebody not intimately familiar with this species.
Fairy Wand Images
click to enlarge
The Best Time to See
Vegetative plants may be present from early spring to late fall. If the plant flowers, these flowers will begin to appear late-May and may persist to late July or even early August. The flowering stalks should persist into the winter. Surveys may take place anytime from early spring to late summer, but the plants stand out more in flower. Since the plants do not flower every though, surveys that target the flowers may be difficult. The recommended survey time is May and June.
J F M A M J J A S O N D
Vegetative Flowering Fruiting
The time of year you would expect to find Fairy Wand vegetative (blue shading), flowering (green shading) and fruiting (orange shading) in New York.