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Symplocarpus foetidus

This plant has poison characteristics. See below.
Common Name(s):
Skunk cabbage
Categories:
Poisonous Plants, Wildflowers
Description:
Perennial herb; leaves large and heart-shaped; flowers small in a dark spadix surrounded by a purple-brown spathe, foul-smelling.
Season:
Early summer
Foliage:
Large (1 to 2 feet) ovate to cordate leaves are ribbed, broad at the base; produced after flowering
Flower:
Fleshy purple to reddish brown, spathe wraps around a heavy round spadix; tiny flowers grow on the spadix; foul, skunk-like odor
Site:
Bogs, swamps, wet meadows, very wet woods
Family:
Araceae
Origin:
USA, NC
Distribution:
Mountains and Piedmont
Poison Part:
All parts
Poison Delivery Mode:
Ingestion
Symptoms:
Burning and swelling of lips, tongue, and throat; nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea may also occur
Edibility:
EDIBLE PARTS: Young, uncurled leaves and roots HARVEST TIME: Only collect leaves and roots from areas you know have NOT been treated with pesticides. Collect the bright green, unfurled leaves in the very early spring. SAFE HANDLING PROCEDURES: Soak young shoots and roots in warm water to remove dirt and debris. Do not use dish detergent or any type of sanitizer. These products can leave a residue. Carefully handle leaves after collecting. Bruised leaves will give off an unpleasant smell. The smell disappears after cooking. Cook for 20 minutes, change the water at least twice and replace with fresh, boiling salted water. Serve like greens. Roots are very bitter and burning in their raw state. Peel, cut into small pieces, roast in an oven for at least one hour and grind in a flour or coffee grinder until quite fine. Add to bread dough or muffin batter.
Toxic Principle:
Calcium oxalate crystals and possibly others
Severity:
TOXIC ONLY IF LARGE QUANTITIES EATEN. CAUSES SEVERE PAIN IN THE MOUTH IF EATEN!
Found in:
Forest or natural area in wet woods
Life Cycle:
Perennial

NCCES plant id: 1175

Symplocarpus foetidus Symplocarpus foetidus
Symplocarpus foetidus Symplocarpus foetidus
Symplocarpus foetidus Symplocarpus foetidus