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Wasowski, Sally and Andy
Circaea alpina L.
Small enchanter's nightshade
USDA Symbol: CIAL
USDA Native Status: Native to U.S.
Slender stems with several pairs of heart-shaped leaves and tiny white flowers in racemes.
Circe, the Greek enchantress for whom the genus is named, possessed magical powers and a knowledge of poisonous herbs; she could change men into swine. A Eurasian species of Circaea, with races in eastern North America, was one of Circe’s magical plants.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Herb Leaf:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: White
Bloom Time: May , Jun , Jul , Aug
AK , AZ , CA , CO , CT , DC , IA , ID , IL , IN , KY , MA , MD , ME , MI , MN , MT , NC , ND , NH , NJ , NM , NV , NY , OH , OR , PA , RI , SD , TN , UT , VA , VT , WA , WI , WV , WY Canada: NB
, PE Native Distribution:
Across northern North America; in West, south mostly in mountains to southern California, Arizona, and New Mexico; in East, south to Georgia. Native Habitat:
Cool damp woods. USDA Native Status: L48(N), AK(N), CAN(N),
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Medium
Light Requirement: Shade
CaCO3 Tolerance: Low
BenefitConspicuous Flowers: yes
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Record Modified: 2007-12-23
Research By: TWC Staff