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Paris (genus)

March 4, 2018
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Family: Trilliaceae
Origins: Widespread across Europe and Asia. Centre of diversity in China.

The genus Paris consists of around 24 species of flowering herbaceous plants found in temperate mixed forests. It is a popular genus and is widely available.
There are two subgenera: Paris and Daiswa. Paris is further divided into section Paris and section Kinugasa. Paris, Daiswa and Kinugasa are all often used so it isn’t uncommon to see Paris quadrifolia and Daiswa luquaensis listed for example.

Trilliaceae Paris in a pot


All species have simple, erect stems. A single flower sits above a terminal whorl of leaves (an arrangement of leaves radiating from a single point).

Plants in the Daiswa and Paris subgenera look the same. The difference occurs in the ovary, where Daiswa has one chamber while Paris has at least four. Kinugasa is identified by its white petaloid sepals. (Sepals enclose and protect the petals. Petaloid simply means resembling a petal.)

paris genus Paris genus

How to grow – in the garden

Plant deep in well-drained woodland or humus-rich soil (neutral to slightly acidic).

Plant in a slightly shaded spot that remains moist in summer.

In autumn, feed with a quality leafmould mulch. The mulch and deep planting helps protect the emerging flower bud from frost damage in winter.

How to grow – in pots

Choose a loam, leafmould and gritty sand compost, opened up with fine bark. This works well for most species. Avoid letting it dry out completely, even in its dormant state.

The root system can be vast. Choose deeper pots for plants with thick rhizomes. In the Paris subgenus, there are some species with slender rhizomes. These are better suited to shallow pots.


Propagation is by division or seed. For more information on how to do this, please read our detailed portrait.

If you can grow Trillium in your garden, then Paris is definitely one to try.