Apr. 27, 2022

common arrowhead, Sagittaria latifolia

Common arrowhead is also called wapato. That seems somehow right for a plant that was potatoes before there were potatoes. The tubers of this most common arrowhead species were a prized food of native peoples. They were eaten in much the same ways as potatoes, and were also dried and ground into flour. Even better than potatoes, the buds and leaves were also eaten (potato greens are toxic). Arrowheads are also important food for wildlife that can dig out the roots, such as muskrats. Sometimes Native Americans would raid muskrat stashes of these plants. Wapato grows in every state and province except LB, NT, NU, and YT. Lenawee Co MI, 8/28/10. Water-plantain family, Alismataceae.