Maianthemum bifoliium (related to Smilacina) is found naturally through W Europe and out to Siberia, China and Japan. In Britain the May Lily is now only locally common, and is found in only half a dozen sites in Northern England. It grows in ancient broad-leaved woodland or conifer stands on ancient woodland sites. In the garden it likes dappled shade, which is moist but not wet and will carpet the ground with sculptured leaves, which look like miniature hosta foliage. Leaves are produced alternately up the stem, which carries a spike of sweet scented white flowers opening to a star shape. It rarely if ever sets seed, but will form clumps as it becomes established.
The dormant form is a thin wiry root with callouses; plant these 3" (8cm) deep, 3" (8cm) apart, and allow them to thicken up