Herbs & Plants

Zygadenus elegans

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Botanical Name : Zygadenus elegans
Family: Liliaceae (Lily Family)
Kingdom: Plantae
Species: elegans (Lat. for elegant)
•Tracheophyta (vascular)
•Spermatophyta (seed bearing)
Angiospermae (enclosed seed)Class: Monocoteldonae (one seed-leaf)

Genera: Zygadenus (Death-camass) (Grk. zygon = yolk + aden = gland, referring to the paired, yolked glands.)

Common Name :Death Camas,Green Lily

Habitat : North American, mostly in west, east to Lake Michigan.Sunny slopes, open woods, river banks, gravelly places, to moist alpine and tundra.


.It is a Herbaceous (not woody) Perennial plant.Bulb: ovoid, membranous, coated. Stems: slender. Leaves: very glaucous, narrow; bracts long-keeled, lanceolate, rather large. Flowers. in a single raceme, or a large panicle, its branches slender, ascending, the perianth adnate to the base of the ovary, its segments broadly oval, the inner abruptly contracted to a short claw, gland obcordate. Fruit: seeds oblong, angular.

A tall attractive plant whose branching stems are covered by many round creamy flowers splashed with green. These flowers are six-parted and have a number of brown-tipped stamens clustered about the large green base of the pistil. The capsule, or dry fruit, which develops as the floral leaves die and drop off, is three-lobed and very large. The leaves of the Green Lily are long and narrow and are covered with a whitish bloom.
Most plants finished blooming by 3rd week in July.

Propagation: Through seeds.

Constituents:All parts contain the poisonous alkaloid zygadine.

Medicinal Uses:
Death camass was once used as an external medicine.  The Blackfoot Indians applied a wet bound dressing of the pulped bulbs to relieve the pain of bruises, sprains and rheumatism.Roots were mashed and applied to swollen knees or aching legs, adhering without a bandage.

Known health hazards : One of the region’s most poisonous plants. All parts of the plant contain the poisonous alkaloid zygadine. Do Not Eat.

Animal Uses: It is  been reported that the Blue Grouse can eat the bulbs, but it will make their meat poisonous.

The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.


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