Plant of the Month: Goldenrod (Solidago)

Solidago, commonly known as goldenrod, is a genus of perennial plant in the daisy family (Asteraceae). The genus name ‘Solidago’ is derived from Latin and means “to heal or make whole” which is reflecting its use as a traditional herbal medicine. Goldenrod flowers and leaves can be dried or used fresh to make tea. The flowers are also edible and can be used as garnishes. Leaves are edible and spinach like and can be used in the same manner. Goldenrod is often used as a supplement for improving urinary health as well as reducing inflammation of the body.

The most common species of goldenrod native to and found in Alberta include Giant Goldenrod (S. gigantea), Missouri Goldenrod (S. missouriensis), Sticky Goldenrod (S. simplex), Alpine Goldenrod (S. multiradiata), and Elegant Goldenrod (S. lepida; previously S. canadensis - split into two new genera). The shape of the flower plumes, leaf shapes, hairiness, and flowering time vary between species. However, they can look quite similar, so when in doubt, just identify it as “Solidago.” All goldenrods have clusters of many small yellow daisy-like flowers at or near the top of their stem. Around Calgary, you will find goldenrod blooming from late July through September. Goldenrods are great native plants that support many pollinators.

Some goldenrod species, commonly S. gigantea, are parasitized by the goldenrod gall fly, Eurosta solidaginis. The larvae will eat the inner parts of the stem and secrete a chemical that triggers the plant to form a gall. The larvae will continue to eat the inner soft layer of the gall, overwinter in the gall, and then emerge as an adult in the late spring.

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Publicado el septiembre 5, 2023 03:37 TARDE por jdo77 jdo77


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