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White Snakeroot

Ageratina altissima


White Snakeroot contains the toxin tremetol; when the plants are consumed by cattle, the meat and milk become contaminated with the toxin. When milk or meat containing the toxin is consumed, the poison is passed on to humans. If consumed in large enough quantities, it can cause tremetol poisoning in humans. The poisoning is also called milk sickness, as humans often ingested the toxin by drinking the milk of cows that had eaten snakeroot. This plant does serve a medical purpose. Root tea has been used to treat ague, diarrhea, kidney stones, and fever. A root poultice can be used on snakebites.


USA: AL , AR , CT , DC , DE , FL , GA , IA , IL , IN , KS , KY , LA , MA , MD , ME , MI , MN , MO , MS , NC , ND , NE , NH , NJ , NY , OH , OK , PA , RI , SC , SD , TN , TX , VA , VT , WI , WV Canada: NB , NS , ON , SK Native Distribution: S. Ontario to New Brunswick; south through New England to Virginia and upland Georgia; west to Louisiana and ne. Texas; north to Wisconsin. Native Habitat: Woods and thickets.


Spotted near the overlook of Johns Mountain Wildlife Management Area

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Spotted by

Georgia, USA

Spotted on Aug 17, 2013
Submitted on Oct 25, 2013

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