Angelica sylvestris

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Wild angelica
Illustration Angelica silvestris0.jpg
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Asterids
Order: Apiales
Family: Apiaceae
Genus: Angelica
A. sylvestris
Binomial name
Angelica sylvestris

Angelica sylvestris or wild angelica is a species of flowering plant, native to Europe and central Asia. An annual or short-lived perennial growing to a maximum of 2.5 metres (8.2 ft), it has erect purplish stems and rounded umbels of minuscule white or pale pink flowers in late summer.[2][3]

Habitat and ecology[edit]

The Latin specific epithet sylvestris means “growing in woodland”.[4] However it tolerates a range of conditions including fields, hedgerows, open woods, marshes and fens. It will grow in light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils.

It has recently been determined to be an invasive weed in New Brunswick and Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, Canada. "According to the New Brunswick Invasive Species Council, unless this species is controlled, Woodland Angelica could spread throughout Canada, overwhelming other vegetation."[5][6] The flowers are visited by a wide array of insects and are thus characterised by a generalised pollination system.[7]

Adult wasps of Dolichovespula norwegica are known to feed off the nectar provided by A. sylvestris.[8]

Cultivation and uses[edit]

A. sylvestris is cultivated in gardens. The cultivar ‘Ebony’, with pink flowers, has gained the Royal Horticultural Society’s Award of Garden Merit.[9]

It was used as a vegetable until the 20th century. The plant prevents scurvy, and it can be stored. The stem was eaten fresh, and the leaves could be boiled to a stew for storage. It could later be cooked up with milk into a tasty dish. The plant has also been used for dyeing.

Angelica sylvestris roots have been used in the traditional Austrian medicine internally as tea or tincture for treatment of disorders of the gastrointestinal tract, respiratory tract, nervous system, and also against fever, infections, and flu.[10]



  1. ^ Lansdown, R.V. (2014). "Angelica sylvestris". The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. IUCN. 2014: e.T19620785A19621071. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.2014-1.RLTS.T19620785A19621071.en. Retrieved 4 January 2018.
  2. ^ "Woodland Angelica - Angelica sylvestris". Archived from the original on 17 September 2011. Retrieved 4 August 2011.
  3. ^ Brickell, Christopher, ed. (2008). The Royal Horticultural Society A-Z Encyclopedia of Garden Plants. United Kingdom: Dorling Kindersley. ISBN 9781405332965.
  4. ^ Harrison, Lorraine (2012). RHS Latin for Gardeners. United Kingdom: Mitchell Beazley. ISBN 184533731X.
  5. ^ "Invasive species going wild in the Saint John River Valley". Archived from the original on September 27, 2011. Retrieved August 4, 2011.
  6. ^ "Woodland Angelica - Angelica sylvestris". New Brunswick Invasive Species Council. Archived from the original on September 17, 2011. Retrieved August 4, 2011.
  7. ^ Van Der Kooi, C. J.; Pen, I.; Staal, M.; Stavenga, D. G.; Elzenga, J. T. M. (2015). "Competition for pollinators and intra-communal spectral dissimilarity of flowers" (PDF). Plant Biology. doi:10.1111/plb.12328.
  8. ^ "Dolichovespula norwegica". Ecology of Commanster. Archived from the original on 2014-10-06.
  9. ^ "RHS Plantfinder - Angelica sylvestris 'Ebony'". Royal Horticultural Society. Retrieved 12 January 2018.
  10. ^ Vogl, S; Picker, P; Mihaly-Bison, J; Fakhrudin, N; Atanasov, A. G.; Heiss, E. H.; Wawrosch, C; Reznicek, G; Dirsch, V. M.; Saukel, J; Kopp, B (2013). "Ethnopharmacological in vitro studies on Austria's folk medicine--an unexplored lore in vitro anti-inflammatory activities of 71 Austrian traditional herbal drugs". Journal of Ethnopharmacology. 149 (3): 750–71. doi:10.1016/j.jep.2013.06.007. PMC 3791396. PMID 23770053.