Apios americana Medik. - Ground Nut


 

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Apios americana - (image 1 of 4)

 

Taxonomy

Family: Fabaceae

Habitat

Moist woods and thickets

Associates

 

Distribution

Quebec west to MN and SD, south to FL and TX.

Morphology

Perennial vine; rhizomes with 2 or more tubers. Leaves alternate, once pinnate; leaflets 5-7, glabrous, lanceolate, 4-6 cm. Flowers in short racemes from the leaf axils, maroon to brown-purple; standard rounded or retuse at the summit.

Notes

Flowers July to September.

Wetland indicator: Facultative Wetland

The underground stems produce rather large, edible tubers that were an important food source for Native Americans and early settlers. Washed and peeled, they can be boiled or roasted and used like potatoes.

References

Gleason, Henry A. and A. Cronquist. 1991. Manual of Vascular Plants of Northeastern United States and Adjacent Canada. Second Ed.
The New York Botanical Garden. Bronx, NY

 

Peterson, L. A. 1977. A Field Guide to Edible Wild Plants: Eastern and central North America.

Houghton Mifflin Company. New York, NY

 

Swink, F. and G. Wilhelm. 1994. Plants of the Chicago Region.
Indiana Academy of Science. The Morton Arboretum. Lisle, Illinois.

 


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Michael Hough 2004