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Sanguisorba canadensis (Canadian burnet)
Cressler, Alan

Sanguisorba canadensis

Sanguisorba canadensis L.

Canadian Burnet, American Burnet

Rosaceae (Rose Family)

Synonym(s): Sanguisorba canadensis ssp. latifolia, Sanguisorba canadensis var. latifolia, Sanguisorba sitchensis, Sanguisorba stipulata

USDA Symbol: SACA14

USDA Native Status: L48 (N), AK (N), CAN (N), SPM (N)

This plant bears dense, erect, cylindrical masses (spikes) of small, white flowers.

The conspicuous stamens give the finger-like flower clusters a fuzzy appearance. The flowers of the European species, European Great Burnet (S. officinalis), are red-brown; this accounts for the common name, from an old French word for "brown." It and Garden Burnet (S. minor), with greenish flowers, were both introduced from Europe and naturalized in the East. The generic name is from the Latin sanguis ("blood") and sorbere (" to drink up") and refers to the juice of the plant, which was reputed to stop bleeding.


From the Image Gallery

35 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: White
Bloom Time: Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep , Oct


USA: AK , CT , DC , DE , GA , ID , IL , IN , KY , MA , MD , ME , MI , NC , NH , NJ , NY , OH , OR , PA , RI , TN , VA , VT , WA , WV
Canada: MB , NB , NL , NS
Native Distribution: Labrador south to Newfoundland, New England, New Jersey, Delaware, and in mountains to Georgia; northwest to Indiana, Illinois, and Michigan.
Native Habitat: Swamps, bogs.

Growing Conditions

Soil Moisture: Wet


Warning: Some people are sensitive to burnets. Sensitivity varies with a personís age, weight, physical condition, and individual susceptibility.
Conspicuous Flowers: yes

National Wetland Indicator Status

This information is derived from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Wetland Plant List, Version 3.1 (Lichvar, R.W. 2013. The National Wetland Plant List: 2013 wetland ratings. Phytoneuron 2013-49: 1-241). Click here for map of regions.

From the National Organizations Directory

According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:

Longwood Gardens - Kennett Square, PA
Mt. Cuba Center - Hockessin, DE

Additional resources

USDA: Find Sanguisorba canadensis in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Sanguisorba canadensis in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Sanguisorba canadensis


Record Modified: 2014-09-18
Research By: TWC Staff

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