Wild Ginger

Asarum caudatum

Wild Ginger

APPEARANCE

Wild ginger is an evergreen plant with thick roots, and trailing stems with heart-shaped leaves on long stalks. The flowers are purple and bell-shaped, with three petals. The whole plant smells like lemon-ginger when crushed.

RANGE & HABITAT

It is found growing in many places in North America. In B.C., it’s found mostly in southern areas, and almost always in damp shaded woodlands.

LIFE CYCLE

Wild ginger starts blooming in April, and the flowers grow into egg-shaped fruits. It sprouts easily from pieces of the root.

ANIMAL USES

Not many animals eat this plant, and it is poisonous to some caterpillars and fly larvae.

TRADITIONAL FIRST NATIONS USES

First Nations peoples made tea from the roots, poultices for headaches and other pains and bedding for babies from the leaves.

MODERN USES

It is a very valuable garden plant, and many people still eat the roots in teas and as a ginger substitute.

STATUS

COSEWIC: Not at Risk
CDC: Yellow

MORE INFORMATION

www.wildflower.org

Photo: PluckyTree

More Coast Mountains species

Yellow Cedar
Wild Ginger
Western Hemlock
Tailed Frog
Sword Fern
Salal
Rough-Skinned Newt
Red Alder
Pacific Treefrog
Pacific Salmon
Pacific Giant Salamander
Marbled Murrelet
Keen's Long-Eared Bat
Devil's Club
Columbian Black-tailed Deer
Banana Slug
Bald Eagle