Herb: Biscuitroot

Latin name: Lomatium ambiguum

Synonyms: Cogswelia ambigua, Peucedanum ambiguum

Family: Umbelliferae

Medicinal use of Biscuitroot:

An infusion of the flowers and upper leaves has been used in the treatment of colds and sore throats.

Description of the plant:


75 cm
(2 feet)


Habitat of the herb:

Open slopes and flat land up to moderate elevations. Usually on dry soils.

Edible parts of Biscuitroot:

Root - raw or cooked. A staple food for some native North American Indian tribes. The fresh root is rather like parsnip in flavour, though when the plant dies down the root becomes brittle with an agreeable flavour of celery. The root can also be dried and ground into a powder for use as a flavouring in soups etc. Seed - ground into a powder or eaten raw. An aromatic flavour, it can be used as a flavouring in cooked foods. Flowers and upper leaves can be used as a flavouring in salads, soups etc.

Propagation of the herb:

Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame. Stored seed can be rather slow to germinate, when sown in the spring it usually takes at least 12 months to germinate. Giving it a period of cold stratification might reduce this time. The seedlings need to be pricked out into individual pots as soon as they are large enough to handle, and should be planted out into their permanent positions in the summer. Fresh seed can be sown immediately in situ. Division may be possible in spring or autumn.

Cultivation of Biscuitroot:

Open slopes and flat land up to moderate elevations. Usually on dry soils.

Known hazards of Lomatium ambiguum:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.