Jul. 7, 2020

whorled milkwort, Polygala verticillata

Whorled milkwort is the second species of that genus at Sibley prairie. These are small plants, not much more than a half foot tall with eighth inch flowers. They're one of those rewards for getting down close to the ground to see what might normally pass by. The Sibley population is the most colorful in my experience. The flowers are often more pale or even greenish. An infusion of this plant was used by the Cherokee and Iroquois to treat bowel problems in children. Whorled milkwort grows in dry open spots in AL, AR, CT, DE, FL, GA, IA, ID, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MS, MT, ND, NC, NE, NJ, NY, OH, OK, PA, RI(S), SC, SD, TN, TX, VA, VT, WI, WV, WY, MB, ON, QC, and SK. Wayne Co MI, 8/1/14. Milkwort family, Polygalaceae.