A 4-sided, grooved stem bearing a branching, somewhat pyramidal, terminal cluster of small, erect, sac-shaped, greenish-brown flowers with magenta-brown interiors.
Figworts are tall plants with brownish or greenish flowers in a large branched panicle. The common name figwort refers to the early use of the plants in treating hemorrhoids, an ailment once known as figs. The plants were also used as a tonic; in the 1800s an infusion of the roots was given as a treatment for insomnia and anxiety. Hare Figwort (S. lanceolata), similar to Maryland Figwort, has shiny flowers and a greenish-yellow fifth stamen; it is found from Alberta east to Nova Scotia, south to North Carolina, northwest to Ohio and Illinois, southwest to Oklahoma, and north to North Dakota. Figwort (S. nodosa), a very similar European species, has become established in New York, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey; it has a brownish-purple sterile stamen and usually finishes flowering in June.
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