Culver’s Root

This is in the native plants area at Elm Bank. Around 6 feet tall. Very striking. Can easily be cultivated in gardens! Several native tribes made a tea of the roots to use an an emetic. Culver was an 18th century doctor who popularized its use. It’s related to digitalis (foxglove) and is toxic if ingested. Cotton Mather’s daughter died of Culver’s Root poisoning when she was treated with it for some minor malady. (Cotton Mather, 1663 – 1728, was a Puritan minister in Massachusetts, famous for his role in the Salem witch trials.) Snapdragon family.

Culver’s Root, Culver’s physic, Bowman’s root, Blackroot (Veronicastrum virginicum)