Plant of the day: common woodland star

Lithophragma_affine2Common woodland star is a raggedy-petalled, white little flower–look for it in meadows, brushy slopes and forests. The long slender stalk is reddish and grows up to two feet tall.  It is sprinkled with round, scallop-edged leaves below, and a few white flowers above. This is Lithophragma affine, a native to California and Oregon

Hillside woodland star is another very similar species of Lithophragma that’s found in the area, but the green cup of sepals (where the flower joins the stalk) is dramatically flattened. With hillside woodland star, it is tapered or funnel-shaped.

The Mendocino Indians chewed the root for colds and stomachaches.Lithophragma_affine1

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