Mayflower (Epigaea repens)

Mayflower (Epigaea repens)
Also known as: trailing arbutus


Bloom time: April – May

Additional photos:

General: Often almost hidden by grass and fallen leaves, the mayflower is a low, woody evergreen that grows from long trailing stems with shallow fragile roots.

Leaves & Twigs: This plant has simple, shiny, dark green leaves which are oval in shape.

Flowers & Fruits:

  • Pink-and-white, trumpet-shaped flowers form small clusters and have a spicy fragrance.
  • The plant does not set seed every year, so it spreads very slowly.

Habitat: Mayflower is most common in rocky pastures, barren lands and grassy areas where the soil is acidic and well drained.

PlantWatch Pointers: Select a typical patch of plants, if the plants are very abundant, mark off a l-metre-square section to observe.

To Observe:

  • First bloom: when the first flowers are open in the observed plants.
  • Mid bloom: when 50% of the flowers are open in the observed plants.

Distribution Map:

Distribution Map

This species is monitored in:

  • Nova Scotia
  • Ontario
  • Quebec

The plant’s name refers to its bloom time because it typically flowers in May.