Description from Flora of China
Aletris dickinsii Franchet; A. foliata (Maximowicz) Bureau & Franchet var. glabra (Bureau & Franchet) Yamamoto; A. foliata var. sikkimensis (J. D. Hooker) Franchet; A. formosana (Hayata) Sasaki; A. sikkimensis J. D. Hooker; ? A. tavelii H. Léveillé; Metanarthecium formosanum Hayata.
Plants glabrous throughout. Rhizome stout. Leaves usually rather few (4--10) and laxly tufted, sometimes more numerous and dense, linear-lanceolate to linear, 5--30 cm × 5--18 mm. Scape 15--100 cm. Raceme 7--45 cm, covered with viscid secretion (to which dust, fibers, seeds, etc. adhere), laxly to densely 15--120-flowered. Flowers subsessile to distinctly pedicellate; pedicel 0.5--3(--4.5) mm; bract borne at or near base of pedicel, linear-lanceolate, 2--16 mm, slightly shorter than flower to 2.5 × flower length, apex obtuse; bracteole borne on proximal 1/2 of pedicel above bract. Perianth yellowish green or cream (with green or greenish brown midvein on lobes), 3--6 mm, sometimes sparsely papillose; tube urceolate, abruptly constricted at apex; lobes erect, oblong-lanceolate or narrowly so, 1.5--3 × 0.5--1 mm, 0.6--1 × tube length, apex obtuse. Capsule obovoid to subglobose, angular or ± so, 4--6 × 3--4.5 mm, apex of valves gradually narrowed; style to 0.7 mm; stigma not or only slightly thickened. Fl. May--Aug, fr. Aug--Nov. 2 n = 26.
Aletris glabra is very similar to, and overlaps morphologically with, the Japanese A. foliata (Maximowicz) Bureau & Franchet (J. Bot. (Morot) 5: 156. 1891). The latter species tends to have a larger perianth (5--7 mm), with lobes 0.75--1.2 ( tube length, and capsule ovoid to obovoid-subglobose. If the two were considered synonymous, the name A. foliata would have priority because it is based on Metanarthecium foliatum Maximowicz (in Trautvetter et al., Decas Pl. Nov. 10. 1882). In making their new combination in Aletris Bureau and Franchet misspelled the names as “A. foliosa” and “M. foliosum,” respectively, and were followed by several other authors. Aletris fauriei H. Léveillé & Vaniot (in H. Léveillé, Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. 5: 283. 1908), described from Korea, seems slightly closer to A. foliata than to A. glabra judging from the only specimens seen by the present authors (the type collection).
Abies Pinus and Quercus forests, thickets, moist meadows, flood lands, alpine grasslands, rocky slopes; 1200--4000 m. Fujian, Gansu, Guizhou, Hubei, Jiangxi, Shaanxi, Sichuan, Taiwan, Xizang, Yunnan [Bhutan, Sikkim].