Angelica archangelica

Parts Used: Root, leaves, stems, and fruit

Precautions: Angelica is a strong emmenagogue, meaning it increases blood flow in and to the pelvic area and uterus, even causing menstruation. It should not be used during pregnancy. It contains high levels of coumarin, a fragrant organic compound with blood-thinning properties, and can cause an adverse interaction with anticoagulant drugs.

Identifying/Growing: Angelica grows wild in fields and meadows throughout the world’s temperate zones, particularly along streams and rivers. It prefers fairly shady areas, where you’ll find it growing to a height of 3 to 6 feet. Clusters of small creamy yellow or greenish flowers emerge in late June to July and emit a lovely aroma. You can grow angelica in a spot with partial shade to full sun. Moist, well-drained soil is ideal, as is proximity to a water feature. Place your plants at least 12 inches apart after germination, and harvest them when they are fully mature. Angelica is a biennial plant; planting it successively year after year will ensure that you get a harvest every year.