Wednesday, 4 July 2018

Mullein Rosette

    I think Mullein is generally thought of as a weed.  I usually see it growing along the margins of a highway or road.  It is generally known as the “Velvet Plant” because all of its leaves have a velvet like texture.  It has a history as a medicinal plant, that was used from everything from asthma, hemorrhoids, gout, burns, as well as other ailments.  
    It is generally a biennial, meaning it takes two years to grow, first year just forming a rosette (above) and the second year putting out a tall stem with yellow flowers.  It can grow up to 3 meters tall, although I have only seen them get about half size that around here.  In Appalachia, the yellow flowers were sometimes used as a yellow hair dye.  
    This blog forces me to constantly be on the lookout for something to take a photo of, and yesterday it was this Mullein rosette that caught my eye.  I found it growing along the edge of Highway 16, at the riverside rest area beside the Fraser River east of McBride.  Even though they are not uncommon, I’m pretty sure they are not a native plant that was probably brought in by some vehicle whizzing down the highway.

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