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Tellima grandiflora 11202.JPG
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Core eudicots
Order: Saxifragales
Family: Saxifragaceae
Genus: Tellima
Species: T. grandiflora
Binomial name
Tellima grandiflora
(Pursh) Dougl. ex Lindl.

Tellima grandiflora, the bigflower tellima[1] or fringecups, is a herbaceous perennial plant of the family Saxifragaceae. It is the only species in the genus Tellima.[2][3] It has rounded leaves that emerge from a rootstock, and reach heights of 30 cm. It is evergreen in mild winters. Flowers are borne in spring and early summer, on spikes up to 60 cm high. The green calyx is 6–8 mm long; the five flower petals are greenish-white to purple, pinnately divided and spreading. The petals are deeply fringed.


The plant is a native of moist forests in western North America, from Alaska and British Columbia to northern California.[4] It can be a garden escape and become naturalised in some other areas, e.g. Great Britain.

Tellima grandiflora 4967f.JPG


It is widely grown in gardens. Different strains have been developed. It seeds itself freely in suitable climates.

This plant, crushed and made into an infusion, was used by the Skagit to aid people in sicknesses such as loss of appetite.[5] Ellagitannins are chemical compounds that have potential antiviral activity.[6] Tellimagrandin II, the first of the ellagitannins, formed from pentagalloyl glucose, is laccase-catalyzed dimerised to cornusiin E in T. grandiflora.[7]


  1. ^ "Tellima grandiflora". Natural Resources Conservation Service PLANTS Database. USDA. Retrieved 8 December 2015. 
  2. ^ Charles Leo Hitchcock & Arthur Cronquist (1973). Flora of the Pacific Northwest: an Illustrated Manual. Seattle: University of Washington Press. ISBN 0-295-95273-3. 
  3. ^ Mark Turner & Phyllis Gustafson (2006). Wildflowers of the Pacific Northwest. Portland, OR: Timber Press. ISBN 0-88192-745-7. 
  4. ^ "Tellima grandiflora". WTU Herbarium Image Collection. Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture. Retrieved April 26, 2011. 
  5. ^ Jim Pojar & Andy MacKinnon (2004). Plants of the Pacific Northwest Coast. Edmonton: Lone Pine Publishing. ISBN 978-1-55105-530-5. 
  6. ^ Stéphane Quideau, Tatiana Varadinova, Diana Karagiozova, Michael Jourdes, Patrick Pardon, Christian Baudry, Petia Genova, Theodore Diakov & Rozalina Petrova (February 2004). "Main structural and stereochemical aspects of the antiherpetic activity of nonahydroxyterphenoyl-containing C-glycosidic ellagitannins". Chemistry & Biodiversity. 1 (2): 247–258. PMID 17191843. doi:10.1002/cbdv.200490021. 
  7. ^ Ruth Niemetz & Georg G. Gross (2003). "Ellagitannin biosynthesis: laccase-catalyzed dimerization of tellimagrandin II to cornusiin E in Tellima grandiflora". Phytochemistry. 64 (7): 1197–1201. PMID 14599517. doi:10.1016/j.phytochem.2003.08.013. 

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