General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Herb/Forb
Sun Requirements: Partial Shade to Full Shade
Water Preferences: Wet Mesic
Plant Height: 6 to 10 inches (15-25cm)
Plant Spread: 6 to 10 inches (15-25cm)
Leaves: Spring ephemeral
Other: Fernlike divided leaves.
Fruit: Other: Long thin pod with round black seeds. Seeds have white growths (elaiosomes), which are eaten by ants.
Fruiting Time: Spring
Flowers: Showy
Flower Color: Pink
Bloom Size: Under 1"
Flower Time: Spring
Underground structures: Tuber
Uses: Will Naturalize
Wildlife Attractant: Bees
Toxicity: Other: may cause skin irritation
Propagation: Seeds: Stratify seeds: Requires a warm, moist period, then a cold, moist period, followed by cool temperatures for germination and growth.
Sow in situ
Start indoors
Can handle transplanting
Seeds are hydrophilic
Other info: Keep seed moist. To start seeds indoors, place in pot. Put the pot in a plastic bag and place in the freezer for 6-8 weeks. Remove the pot after that time and allow to germinate and grow in regular seedling conditions.
Propagation: Other methods: Division
Other: After leaves begin to go dormant, dig up the root stock, break off a few bulblets, and replant. Each will sprout a leaf the next spring, and if all goes well, will flower after a few years.
Pollinators: Bumblebees
Miscellaneous: Goes Dormant

Common names
  • Dutchman's Breeches
  • Boy Britches
  • Butterfly Banners
  • Colic weed
  • Indian boys and girls
  • Kitten Breeches
  • White Hearts
  • Little blue staggers
  • Bleeding Heart

Photo Gallery
Location: Greer Spring, MO
Date: 2019-04-06
Location: Alpine Garden Society show, Hexham UK
Date: 2009-03-28
Location: Greer Spring, MO
Date: 2019-04-06
Photo by bramedog
Location: central Illinois
Date: 2009-04-20
Location: Kentucky
Date: 2024-04-15
Photo by SongofJoy
Location: central Illinois
Date: 2010-04-06
Location: Chicago
Date: April
Location: Ontario, Canada
Date: 2012-05-02
Location: central Illinois
Date: 2009-04-20
Location: Duff Park in Monroeville, PA
Date: 2006-05-04
Location: My garden in N E Pa. 
Date: 2016-04-01
Location: St Louis
Date: 2017-04-04
Location: Ontario, Canada
Date: 2012-05-02
Photo by SongofJoy
Location: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Date: 2015 04-09
Location: Natural Bridge, VA
Location: Duff Park in Monroeville, PA
Date: 2006-05-04
Such fun to spot this aptly-named plant in spring
Location: Lucketts, Loudoun County, Virginia
Date: 2011-04-10

Courtesy Sunlight Gardens, used with permission
Location: My Garden
Date: 2013-05-19
Location: Ontario, Canada
Date: 2012-05-02
Location: Ontario, Canada
Date: 2012-05-02
Location: Ontario, Canada
Date: 2012-05-02
Location: Natural Woodland in Northeastern Indiana
Date: April 20  Mid-Spring
Native Plant
Location: Chicago
Date: 2018-05-06
Photo by SongofJoy

Date: 2015-01-09
Credit NPS

Courtesy Crownsville Nursery
  • Uploaded by vic

Courtesy Crownsville Nursery
  • Uploaded by vic

Photo Courtesy of Lazy S'S Farm Nursery.
  • Uploaded by Joy
Location: central Illinois
Date: 3-30-07
  • Posted by Cyclaminist (Minneapolis, Minnesota - Zone 5a) on May 9, 2016 11:20 AM concerning plant:
    The root is a cluster of tiny tubers on a straight rootstock. They are typically called bulblets, but that's simply because there's no word for miniature tuber. The tubers can be broken off and replanted, and the next year they will sprout their own leaves. They take a few years before they are big enough to bloom.
  • Posted by threegardeners (Brockville, Ontario, Canada - Zone 5a) on May 2, 2012 9:49 AM concerning plant:
    Dutchman's Breeches are one of the early spring ephemerals. All traces of these plants are gone by late summer.
    The flower shape gives Dutchman's Breeches its common name.
    An Ontario native plant.
    4 to 8 inches tall.
    Leaves are greyish green and hairless.
    Plants prefer dappled shade in woodland settings.
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