Hepatica americana is in the buttercup family (Ranunculaceae) and is native to the northeastern United States. It is now ofter referred to as Hepatica nobilus var, obtusa. This early spring-blooming herbaceous perennial is commonly referred to as Liverleaf or Liverwort. The common name comes from the resemblance of the leaves to the human liver, both of which have three lobes. According to the previously believed Doctrine of Signatures it was once thought to have medicinal properties for liver ailments. The leaves do not appear to have any documented medicinal value and may be poisonous if ingested. It's one of the methods that the plant uses to avoid being eaten by critters. The species is most well adapted to organic soils that are on the acid side of neutral.
It grows from about 4"-12″ high and is hardy in zones 4a to 8.
Hepatica thrives in cool, moist, deciduous forests with good organic matter and even soil moisture. Bright light in the spring is crucial, or the plant won't bloom, and the flowers emerge early, before the trees leaf out.
This plant is expensive for its size because it takes about 3 years to grow from seed to marketable size.