Green False Hellebore (Veratum viride)
Although the plant is a common sight in northwest meadows, it can still be difficult to find in bloom. Called “false” to distinguish it from a European plant called “Green Hellebore” in the buttercup family. A white variety, which blooms earlier, is less common here, but dominant in California. Both plants are sometimes called “Corn Lily” due to their corn-like leaves.
When ingested, the roots of both varieties act to slow the heartbeat and lower blood pressure and both have been used medicinally by Native Americans. Large doses can be fatal. The young shoots have been known to poison livestock.