This little gem grows all over the forest floor in the very early spring when the redbud is just starting and the spicebush is coming out. It’s sort of small, about 8-10″ high and has white flowers that are tinged with pink at times. Note how each flower has only four petals. The leaves make the common name of Cutleaf Toothwort quite obvious. The botanical name for it, by the way, is Cardamine concantenata. Some older entries still exist using its former name of Dentaria laciniata. It belongs in the Brassicaceae family…that’s the same family with cabbage, horseradish, broccoli, and even wasabi. And yes, the root is edible and is said to taste peppery like a radish.
Whereas most wildflowers seem to grow in clumps or colonies in specific areas, I found this one to be widespread over large areas. Also, the leaves on this plant are quite variable. I found individuals could have thin, lance-shaped leaves like this one or wider and more toothed like in the pictures here and here.