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veronicastrum virginicum L.
Its' botanical name (Veronicastrum) is derived from St. Veronica and astrum (star), after the leaf arrangement
Plantae; Spermatophyta, Angiospermae - Flowering Plants; Dicotyledonae; Lamiidae / Tubiflorae; Scrophulariales; Scrophulariaceae - Snapdragon Family
Introduced by Hale and proved by Burt; Allen: Encyclop. Mat. Med., Vol. V, 556; Hering: Guiding Symptoms, Vol. VII, 48. Clarke: Vol. II, 272.
Description of the substance
This tall, herbaceous perennial was included by Linnaeus in the genus Veronica, but was later assigned by Nuttall to the genus Leptandra, a nomenclature followed by present-day botanists. It has a simple, erect stem, 3 or 4 feet high or more, smooth and downy, furnished with leaves in whorls and terminating in a long spike of white flowers, 6 to 10 inches long. The leaves, of which there are from four to seven in each whorl, are lanceolate, pointed and minutely serrate, and stand on short footstalks. A variety with purple flowers has been described as a distinct species under the name of Leptandra purpurea. The plant flowers in July and August. It grows throughout the United States, in the south mostly in mountain meadows - in the north in rich woods, and is not unfrequently cultivated. It will grow readily in Britain. The rhizome and roots are nearly odourless, the taste bitter and rather acrid, and are generally used dried. The rhizome is of horizontal growth, nearly cylindrical, somewhat branched, externally dark brown to purplish brown, smooth and faintly longitudinally wrinkled, and showing stem bases at intervals of 1/2 to 1 1/2 inch. The rootlets, rising from the under portion, are wiry and brittle when dry.