Herb latin name: Aconitum columbianum

Family: Ranunculaceae (Buttercup Family)

Medicinal use of Aconitum columbianum:

The drug "aconite" can be obtained from the root of this plant. It is used as a heart and nerve sedative. This is a very poisonous plant and should only be used with extreme caution and under the supervision of a qualified practitioner.

Description of the plant:


20 cm
(7 3/4 inch)

July to

Habitat of the herb:

Moist woods to sub-alpine meadows, mostly along streams.

Other uses of Aconitum columbianum:

The seed is used as a parasiticide.

Propagation of the herb:

Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame. The seed can be stratified and sown in spring but will then be slow to germinate. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a cold frame for their first winter. Plant them out in late spring or early summer. Division - best done in spring but it can also be done in autumn. Another report says that division is best carried out in the autumn or late winter because the plants come into growth very early in the year.

Cultivation of Aconitum columbianum:

Moist woods to sub-alpine meadows, mostly along streams.

Known hazards of Aconitum columbianum:

The whole plant is highly toxic - simple skin contact has caused numbness in some people. The roots and seeds are the most toxic and also the leaves just before the plant flowers.

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.