Geum virginianum
(Cream Avens)

Other pictures of this plant:

               Seedpod                                           Leaf                                            Stem                                        Seed                                          Habit

Facts About this Plant:

    Common Names: Cream Avens, Yarrow, Cream-Colored Avens, Virginia Avens, Pale Avens
    Synonyms: Geum flavum, Geum hirsutum
    Lifespan: Perennial
    Zones: 5 - 8
    Type: Forb
    Bloom Time: May - August
    Status: Native

Geum virginianum, or Cream Avens, is native to most of the eastern United States. It is a perennial, which grows in open woods, and along woodland edges. It blooms in early to mid summer, with cream-color flowers.

The plant can be easily confused with two others that grow in its range, namely, Geum canadense and Geum laciniatum. The primary difference between the three is the shape and color of their flowers. Geum canadense has large petals that are longer than its sepals and are bright white. Geum laciniatum has small petals that are shorter than the sepals, and are also bright white. Geum virginianum, however, has petals that are also small and shorter than its sepals, and thus they look most like Geum laciniatum, but they are noticeably cream colored. In addition to these color differences, the plants usually also bloom at slightly different times - Geum laciniatum blooms first in the late spring; then comes Geum canadense, and then Geum virginianum follows. There is some overlap of blooming time with these at times, so bloom time is not always a solid indicator, but can be helpful. Finally, Geum laciniatum has very divided leaves, and hairy stems, while the other two species do not. See image below for a comparison.

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