new videos
hot off the press!  
    more about rocket
mass heaters here.

more videos from
the PDC here.
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic

What is this?  RSS feed

 
                              
Posts: 262
Location: Coast Range, Oregon--the New Magic Land
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
It grows in semi shade or sun, likes it wet, has a big taproot.
 
Dave Boehnlein
Posts: 294
Location: Orcas Island, WA
3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hard to tell...do you have a pic of the whole plant? How tall does it get?

From the flower and the fuzzy leaves I'd say it looks like a borage relative (check out the Boraginaceae family). If you have a copy of Pojar & McKinnon's field guide, it should cover your area (Coastal Oregon).

Dave
 
Susan Monroe
Posts: 1093
Location: Western WA
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Yes, Boraginaceae family.

Considering where you live, it is probably Pentaglottis sempervirens, or Green Alkanet or Evergreen Bugloss.  Although it looks like a nice plant, and can be if controlled, in some areas (coastal WA & OR come to mind) it is generally considered a noxious invasive.

I've been working on getting it out of my yard this spring, before it reseeds or the existing plants get larger.  Now I know it is a perennial instead of an annual, I am suspicious that this year's plants are growing in several of the same places as the plants I thought I dug up last year, so it may be more difficult to eradicate than I anticipated.

What really irritates me is that I planted this stuff.  I got the seeds from on online trade, labeled as 'borage'.  Borage family yes, Borago officinalis (true borage), no.

The flowers and leaves of true borage have a slight cucumber taste.

Sue
 
                              
Posts: 262
Location: Coast Range, Oregon--the New Magic Land
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
thanks for the clues...I'll check them out. Yes I have the Pojar book, but it's not in there(at least as an entry, not in the index under any of the names you all gave.

I was wondering about it being borage-y. My friend says it's comfrey, but the flowers are nothing like comfrey flowers(I do want to grow some comfrey for greens and for fertilizer).

I'll check out your tips. My plant is in a dry post, so it's just about 8" tall(scrawny), but where it's happy(sunny with wet soil) It grows at least two feet tall and the flowers get another 12" above that.  THe leaves are about 12-18" long and 6" wide.

THe photo is just a tad bigger than life size--actually it is lifesize for the flower when it's happy.
 
                              
Posts: 262
Location: Coast Range, Oregon--the New Magic Land
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
THanks! I'm pretty sure it is the Pentaglottis. I live in a place that was homesteaded(in a subsistance backwoods sort of way) about 150 years ago, left alone for 100 years and people sparsely came back up here in little vacation cabins beginnning about 30 years ago. I've been finding some of these old herbs in the woods, they must have escaped from homesteaders gardens. For payback, here's some info I found on them. THanks! I think it's interesting my version has spotted leaves.

According to "Plants for a Future", A. azurea is edible. More specifically, flowers can be eaten raw; they can either make an excellent and decorative addition to the salad bowl, or be used as a garnish. The tender young leaves and young flowering shoots can be cooked and eaten as a vegetable(like spinach).

The same source states that the whole plant is  antitussive,  depurative,  diaphoretic and  diuretic. It is harvested when in flower and dried for later use. The dried and powdered herb is used as a  poultice to treat inflammations. Internal use should be made with caution, however, as the plant contains the alkaloid cynoglossine, which can have a paralyzing effect. Said alkaloid is used medicinally to relieve pain, it depresses the central nervous system and is also potentially carcinogenic.

Other uses, cited by "Plants for a Future", include the extraction of a red dye from the root, which was, at one time, used as a basis for certain cosmetics.

Edible Uses
Colouring; Flowers; Leaves.
Leaves and young shoots - cooked[9, 115, 166]. Used like spinach[2, 183].

Flowers - cooked or used as a garnish[183].

The red dye obtained from the roots can be used to colour oils and fats[105].

Medicinal Uses
Disclaimer
Demulcent; Expectorant; Homeopathy.

All parts of the plant are demulcent and expectorant[9]. They are used externally to treat cuts, bruises and phlebitis and internally to treat coughs and bronchial catarrh[9].

A homeopathic remedy is made from the plant[9]. It is used in the treatment of stomach and duodenal ulcers[9].

Other Uses
Dye.
A red dye is obtained from the roots[13].



 
                              
Posts: 262
Location: Coast Range, Oregon--the New Magic Land
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
WHoop! I take that back, I sat down with Pojar and read thru the Borage fam and it's
Hound's Tongue, or cynoglossum grande, yay! a native wildflower of the WIllamette Valley.  I actually had made a note next to it (I forgot) wondering if this was what it was(no pic, it's in the Tall Bluebells entry, which has flowers that look nothing like Hound's Tongue.

I'll research the culinary/medicinals/ethnobotany and get back. I'm happy it's a native! It's not very common here, except for a few happy patches.

Thansk for the help!!!
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
Boost this thread!