Monday, April 6, 2015

Mindful Monday

Harbinger of Spring
Erigenia Bulbosa

Erigenia bulbosa, also known as harbinger of spring or pepper and salt, is a perennial plant in the carrot family (Apiaceae). E. bulbosais the only species in the genus Erigenia (Nutt.). This plant is known as harbinger of spring because it is one of the earliest blooming native wildflowers of rich forests in the mid-latitude United States. It is found as far north as central New York and southern Wisconsin, west to the western Ozarks, and south to central Alabama.[1] It is also found in extreme southern Ontario.Throughout most of its range it blooms from late February through early April. It is a small spring ephemeral reaching only 5–15 cm tall when in flower, and slightly larger afterwards. Each spherical bulb gives rise to a single purplish stem, which terminates in an umbel. The flowers have white petals and large dark-reddish anthers. The teardrop shaped petals are 3-4 millimeters long, widely spaced and do not touch each other. As is characteristic of the carrot family, the leaves of this plant are sheathed at the base and pinnately divided into many small sections.

The bulb is edible both cooked and raw.[5] The Cherokee were known to chew this plant as medicine for toothaches; it is unknown what parts of plant they chewed.[6] This plant is sometimes used in native wildflower gardens throughout its range.*

* Thank you Wikipedia

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