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In milkweed family. Whole plant is edible when young. Showy orange/red flower clusters, pointy lance-shaped leaves. Round hairy stem (no milky juice). Root used especially to treat lung infections, asthma, bronchitis, vasodilator, anti-spasmodic, expectorant. Milkweed-type seed pods edible when young before silky floss forms. Flowers said to taste like sweet peas when steamed. Leaves can be used like spinach. Do not take in high doses or body will purge uncomfortably. Use poultice for skin problems like swellings, wounds, bruises, ulcers, rashes. Some people may have reactions, safer to boil.
Edible Plant Guide © 2012 Markus Rothkranz