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Balsamorhiza sagittata - (Pursh.)Nutt.

Common Name Oregon Sunflower, Arrowleaf balsamroot
Family Asteraceae or Compositae
USDA hardiness 4-8
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Open hillsides and flat land up to moderate elevations, especially on deep soils[60].
Range Western N. America - South Dakota to British Columbia, south to California and Colorado.
Edibility Rating    (4 of 5)
Other Uses    (2 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (2 of 5)
Care (info)
Fully Hardy Well drained soil Moist Soil Full sun
Balsamorhiza sagittata Oregon Sunflower, Arrowleaf balsamroot


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Balsamorhiza sagittata Oregon Sunflower, Arrowleaf balsamroot
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Summary


Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of flower
Balsamorhiza sagittata is a PERENNIAL growing to 0.3 m (1ft).
It is hardy to zone (UK) 5. It is in flower in July. The species is hermaphrodite (has both male and female organs) and is pollinated by Insects.
Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map

Synonyms

Bupthalmium sagitattum.

Habitats

 Cultivated Beds;

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Leaves  Root  Seed  Shoots  Stem
Edible Uses: Coffee

Root - raw or cooked[46, 61, 106, 161, 257]. The root has a thick crown that is edible raw[213]. Roots have a sweet taste when cooked[2, 183]. A long slow baking is best, the Flathead Indians would bake them in a fire pit for at least 3 days[183]. The roots are resinous and woody with a taste like balsam[212]. Young shoots - raw or cooked[161, 257]. Added to salads or used as a potherb[183]. The large leaves and petioles are boiled and eaten[207]. When eaten in large quantities they act like sleeping pills to cause sleepiness[257]. The young flowering stem can be peeled and eaten raw like celery[183, 257]. Seed - raw or cooked[2, 94, 101, 161]. A highly prized source of food[257]. It can be roasted, ground into a powder and used with cereals when making bread[183, 257]. The raw seed can also be ground into a powder then formed into cakes and eaten without cooking[257]. The seed is rich in oil[213]. Oil. The seed was a prized source of oil for many native North Americans[257]. The roasted root is a coffee substitute[177, 183].

References

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Antirheumatic  Diaphoretic  Diuretic  Febrifuge  Odontalgic  Poultice  Skin  Stomachic  
Vulnerary

Oregon sunflower was quite widely employed as a medicinal herb by various native North American Indian tribes who used it to treat a variety of complaints, but especially stomach problems[257]. It is little used in modern herbalism. The root is antirheumatic, diuretic, cathartic, diaphoretic, febrifuge and vulnerary[94, 257]. An infusion of the leaves, roots and stems has been used as a treatment for stomach pains, colds, whooping cough, TB, fevers and headaches[257]. A decoction of the root has been taken at the beginning of labour to insure easy delivery[257]. The juice from the chewed root is allowed to trickle down the throat to treat sore mouths and throats whilst the root has also been chewed to treat toothaches[257]. The smoke from the root has been inhaled as a remedy for body aches such as rheumatism[257]. The root is chewed or pounded and used as a paste on wounds, blisters, bites, swellings and sores[207, 257]. A poultice made from the coarse, large leaves has been used to treat severe burns[257]. An infusion of the leaves has been used as a wash for poison ivy rash and running sores[257]. The seeds have been eaten as a treatment for dysentery[257].

References

Now available: PLANTS FOR YOUR FOOD FOREST: 500 Plants for Temperate Food Forests and Permaculture Gardens.

An important new book from PFAF. It focuses on the attributes of plants suitable for food forests, what each can contribute to a food forest ecosystem, including carbon sequestration, and the kinds of foods they yield. The book suggests that community and small-scale food forests can provide a real alternative to intensive industrialised agriculture, and help to combat the many inter-related environmental crises that threaten the very future of life on Earth.

Read More

FOOD FOREST PLANTS

Other Uses

Hair  Insulation

The large hairy leaves are used as an insulation in shoes to keep the feet warm[99]. An infusion of the root has been rubbed into the scalp to promote hair growth[257].

Special Uses

Food Forest

References

Cultivation details

Requires a deep fertile well-drained loam in full sun[134, 200]. Plants strongly resent winter wet[134, 200]. Hardy to at least -25°c[200]. Plants are intolerant of root disturbance and should be planted into their permanent positions whilst still small[134]. They withstand heavy grazing in the wild[212]. For polyculture design as well as the above-ground architecture (form - tree, shrub etc. and size shown above) information on the habit and root pattern is also useful and given here if available. The plant growth habit is a clumper with limited spread [1-2]. The root pattern is a tap root similar to a carrot going directly down [1-2].

References

Temperature Converter

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Propagation

Seed - sow early spring in a greenhouse and only just cover the seed. Germination usually takes place within 2 - 6 days at 18°c. Either sow the seed in individual pots or pot up the seedlings as soon as they are large enough to handle and plant them out into their permanent positions in the summer[134]. Division in spring. Very difficult since the plant strongly resents root disturbance[134]. It is probably best to take quite small divisions, or basal cuttings, without disturbing the main clump. Pot these up into individual pots and keep them in light shade in the greenhouse until they are growing away well. Plant them out in the summer if they have grown sufficiently, otherwise over-winter them in the greenhouse and plant out in late spring.

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status :

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameHabitHeightHardinessGrowthSoilShadeMoistureEdibleMedicinalOther
Balsamorhiza deltoideaDeltoid BalsamrootPerennial0.6 4-8  LMNDM41 
Balsamorhiza hookeriBalsam Root, Hooker's balsamroot, Hairy balsamroot, Idaho balsamroot, Rabbithead balsamroot, NeglePerennial0.3 4-8  LMNDM41 
Balsamorhiza incanaHoary BalsamrootPerennial0.9 4-8  LMNDM31 

Growth: S = slow M = medium F = fast. Soil: L = light (sandy) M = medium H = heavy (clay). pH: A = acid N = neutral B = basic (alkaline). Shade: F = full shade S = semi-shade N = no shade. Moisture: D = dry M = Moist We = wet Wa = water.

 

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Author

(Pursh.)Nutt.

Botanical References

60200

Links / References

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