Sunday, August 24, 2014

Longstyle Sweetroot

Longstyle Sweetroot
Osmorhiza longistylis
There are two species of Osmorhiza in Indiana which look quite similar and can be confusing since each of them are sometimes called Sweet Cicely.  The USDA Plants Database gets around this by not calling either one Sweet Cicely.

In any event, the best common name for this species is Aniseroot, or Sweet Anise, since it smells like licorice.  The other identifying trait is that the styles (those skinny hairs that stick out of the middle of the flower) are longer than the petals.  They persist and stick out of the seedpod as its forming.

The styles stick out of the pods
Toothed, compound leaves. Crush them and they smell like anise.
Whole plant
Smooth stem

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