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Taxon  Report  
Apocynum cannabinum  L.
Indian hemp,   Indianhemp dogbane,   HEMP DOGBANE
Apocynum cannabinum is a perennial herb that is native to California, and also found elsewhere in North America and beyond.
Siskiyou Del Norte Modoc Humboldt Shasta Lassen Trinity Plumas Tehama Butte Mendocino Glenn Sierra Yuba Lake Nevada Colusa Placer Sutter El Dorado Yolo Alpine Napa Sonoma Sacramento Mono Amador Solano Calaveras Tuolumne San Joaquin Marin Contra Costa Alameda Santa Cruz Mariposa Madera San Francisco San Mateo Merced Fresno Stanislaus Santa Clara Inyo San Benito Tulare Kings Monterey San Bernardino San Luis Obispo Kern Santa Barbara Ventura Los Angeles Riverside Orange San Diego Imperial

Bloom Period
Genus: Apocynum
Family: Apocynaceae  
Category: angiosperm  
PLANTS group:Dicot
Jepson eFlora section: eudicot

Toxicity: Do not eat any part of this plant.

Wetlands: Equally likely to occur in wetlands and non wetlands

Communities: Yellow Pine Forest, Red Fir Forest, Lodgepole Forest, Foothill Woodland, Chaparral, Valley Grassland, wetland-riparian, many plant communities

Name Status:
Accepted by JEF + PLANTS

Alternate Names:
PLANTSApocynum cannabinum var. angustifolium
JEF + PLANTSApocynum cannabinum var. glaberrimum
PLANTSApocynum cannabinum var. greeneanum
PLANTSApocynum cannabinum var. hypericifolium
PLANTSApocynum cannabinum var. nemorale
Information about  Apocynum cannabinum from other sources
Nursery availability from CNPLX
This plant is available commercially.
Jepson eFlora


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[Wikipedia] Description, Taxonomy, Habitat, Range, Ecology, Toxicity, Uses: Apocynum cannabinum (dogbane, amy root, hemp dogbane, prairie dogbane, Indian hemp, rheumatism root, or wild cotton)[4] is a perennial herbaceous plant that grows throughout much of North America?in the southern half of Canada and throughout the United States. It is poisonous to humans, dogs, cats, and horses. All parts of the plant are toxic and can cause cardiac arrest if ingested. Some Lepidoptera feed on this plant, such as a hummingbird moth. Description Apocynum cannabinum grows up to 1 m (3 ft 3 in) tall. The stems are reddish and contain a milky latex. The leaves are opposite, simple broad lanceolate, 7?15 cm (2+3?4?6 in) long and 3?5 cm (1+1?4?2 in) broad, entire, and smooth on top with white hairs on the underside. It flowers from July to August, has large sepals, and a five-lobed white corolla. The flowers are hermaphrodite, with both male and female organs.[5] Ecology Apocynum cannabinum flowers The plant serves as a larval host for the snowberry clearwing (Hemaris diffinis),[9] which is a pollinator that resembles a small hummingbird.[10] It is also a host plant for the dogbane tiger moth (Cycnia tenera) and the zebra caterpillar (Melanchra picta). The larvae of Marmara apocynella [9] feed on the stems, making a "long whitish serpentine mine".[11] Uses Fiber The stalks of Apocynum cannabinum have been used as a source of fiber by Native Americans[14] to make bows, fire-bows, nets, tie down straps, hunting nets, fishing lines, bags,[15] and clothing.[6] Food The seeds have an edible use as a meal (raw or cooked) when ground into a powder.[5] Chewing gum The plant's latex sap can be squeezed from the plant and allowed to stand overnight to harden into a white gum which can be used (sometimes mixed with clean clay) as chewing gum.[5] Phytoremediation Apocynum cannabinum can be used to sequester lead in its biomass by taking it up from the soil through its roots. This process, called phytoremediation, could help clean sites contaminated with lead.[16] Medicinal Apocynum cannabinum showing sap from a broken leaf It is used in herbal medicine to treat fever and to slow the pulse.[17] Apocynum cannabinum has been employed by various Native American tribes to treat a wide variety of complaints including rheumatism, coughs, pox, whooping cough, asthma, internal parasites, diarrhea, and to increase lactation.[5] The root has been used as a tonic, cardiotonic, diaphoretic, diuretic, an emetic (to induce vomiting), and an expectorant.[17][5] It is harvested in the autumn and dried for later use. The fresh root is medicinally the most active part. A weak tea made from the dried root has been used for cardiac diseases and as a vermifuge (an agent that expels parasitic worms). The milky sap is a folk remedy for genital warts.[5] (link added by Mary Ann Machi)

Suggested Citation
Calflora: Information on California plants for education, research and conservation, with data contributed by public and private institutions and individuals. [web application]. 2024. Berkeley, California: The Calflora Database [a non-profit organization]. Available: https://www.calflora.org/   (Accessed: 07/24/2024).