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True lover's knot

Paris quadrifolia


Small herbaceous plant with characteristic four leaves with parallel nerves - and, unusual for monocots, a visible network of secondary nerves in between the main ones. The fruit, seen here, is a solitary berry, dark blue in color and somewhat blueberry like. Flowers are discreet and solitary mainly yellow-green, with narrow greenish threadlike petals, green petaloid sepals, eight stamens, and a round purple to red ovary in the center - it can be seen in one of my previous spottings, here:


Eurasian species, found in forests growing in shadow, and found up to 2000m of altitude. Here, seen in a small valley in Jura mountains. The valley is surrounded by a coniferous forest, and is composed of grassland, peatland and a small glacial lake.


All parts of this plant are toxic, containing two mucose-irritaing substances, paridine et parastyphnine (whatever that may be...).

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1 Comment

Maria dB
Maria dB a year ago

What an interesting common name for a toxic plant!

Zlatan Celebic
Spotted by
Zlatan Celebic

Bourgogne-Franche-Comté, Tromelin Island

Lat: 46.40, Long: 5.98

Spotted on Aug 5, 2018
Submitted on Aug 10, 2018

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