Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Spiderwort--flower or weed

Is the spiderwort a beautiful flower or is it an obnoxious weed?  It depends on where it grows.  If it is in my yard, it's a weed.  Believe me:  I have manually tried to get rid of the spiderwort.  For the last two or three years, I have been out there in the yard with a shovel digging up this lily like plant with roots and all.  It is a perennial and I will most likely see it again next spring.

The spiderwort is native from Southern Canada to Northern Argentina and it is abundant in Houston Texas area.  It has bright blue flowers lasting only one day but the bees seem to find them.  

There are plenty of wooded areas outside my yard for the spiderwort to grow individually or in clumps, differing in height from knee high and to shorter plant.

The root has lots of tentacles like that of a large spider with many many legs.  It is important that the entire root be dug up or it will come back the following year.  I thought it was a formidable task to rid the yard of the spider wort but it is pretty well under control.

The sap from the spiderwort is similar to okra and aloe and when rubbed on minor burns will bring some relief.  Because it is commonly named "spiderwort", the sap may also bring relief to spider bites.  But in either case, it may be most prudent to see a nurse or a doctor.

I am a little bit too citified for foraging but the spiderwort may be cut up and used in stews as a vegetable and a thickener.

Thank you for visiting my blog.

1 comment:

  1. It's too pretty to be considered a weed. Thanks for sharing its properties.