Thalictrum dioicum

Species Native to Missouri
Common Name: early meadow-rue 
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Ranunculaceae
Native Range: Central and eastern North America
Zone: 4 to 7
Height: 1.00 to 2.00 feet
Spread: 1.00 to 2.00 feet
Bloom Time: April to May
Bloom Description: Green white with a purplish tinge
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Medium
Flower: Showy, Good Cut
Tolerate: Deer


Easily grown in average, medium, well-drained soil in full sun to part shade. Prefers moist, rich, humusy soil and dappled sun. Intolerant of hot and humid conditions.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Thalictrum dioicum is an early meadow rue that grows 1-2' tall. It features lacy, fine-textured, gray-green, compound foliage (superficially resembling columbine or maidenhair fern) and panicles of tiny, drooping, greenish-white flowers often with a purple tinge which appear in late spring (April-May). Male flower has yellowish stamens and female flower has purplish pistils. Missouri native that is usually found on wooded slopes, ravines or ledges near outcroppings of limestone rock.

Genus name comes from the Greek word thaliktron which was a name used by Dioscorides to describe a plant in this genus.

Specific epithet refers to the fact that plants are dioecious (male and female flowers are on separate plants).


No serious insect or disease problems. Powdery mildew and rust are only occasional problems. Taller plants may need staking or other support.


Provides early spring color and contrast to the perennial border, wildflower garden, meadow or naturalized area. Cool, gray-green foliage provides an attractive complement to later blooming perennials in the border.