A Great Plant July 05, 2007
Here is another flower of great stature: 4-7 feet tall. I chanced upon these on the low wet areas of the Richland County Bike Trail. What a beautiful flower in full bloom! No wonder they call it Great Angelica, angelica atropupurea. Angelica is Latin for "angelic," referring to the medicinal properties of the plant, supposedly a cure for the plague, which was revealed to a monk by an angel. It makes for a memorable story, anyway. And the atropurpurea means dark purple, which is a good call, as the stem do have a very purple look to them.
This is a member of the Alpicea family, other well known members are Queen Anne's Lace and Rattlesnake Master. Think "parsley" here and you will be on the right track.
Meanwhile, get out the bike or just walk the dog and see how many new species of plants you can identify right in your own city or neighborhood. You may be surprised at what you find out there!