Friday, April 13, 2012

The May-Apple

This is a group of May-apples, also known as the American mandrake.

You can see one tiny flower over to the right. It's quite a beautiful flower, really, though each plant produces only one.

The leaf is one broad radial shape. Most are nine-pointed, though there is some variance.

The plant produces a lemon-flavored fruit about mid-summer.

We'll check in on the May-apples from time to time to see how they're doing.

More on the May-apple to be found here.


Portia said...

I remember seeing these everywhere when I was a kid, but I never knew they were a member of the mandrake family. The mandrakes are part of the nightshade family, and they are the source of several plant-based medications that are widely used for sea sickness, nausea and vomiting, and excess secretions. Those little patches you put behind your ear to keep from getting sea sick when you go on a cruise come from this source. The belladonna alkaloids also come from the nightshade family. I wouldn't recommend eating any may apples because these compounds are extremely toxic.