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Jimson Weed

Datura stramonium L.

Jimson weed
Figure 70.—Jimson weed (Datura stramonium)
Other common names.—Jamestown weed, Jamestown lily, thorn apple, devil's apple, madapple, stinkweed, stinkwort, devil's-trumpet, fireweed, dewtry.

Habitat and range.—This is a very common weed in fields and waste places almost everywhere in the United States except in the North and West.

Description.—Jimson weed is an ill-smelling, poisonous plant with stout, much-branched, leafy stems from 2 to 5 feet high. The large, smooth, thin, wavy, toothed leaves are from 3 to 8 inches long. The flowers, which appear from May to September, are white, funnel-shaped, about 3 inches long, and have a pronounced odor. The prickly seed pods which follow are about the size of a horsechestnut. When ripe these pods burst open, scattering numerous poisonous black, kidney-shaped seeds.

Part used.—The leaves, collected when the plant is in flower, and the seeds.

Sievers, A.F. 1930. The Herb Hunters Guide. Misc. Publ. No. 77. USDA, Washington DC.
Last update March 19, 1998 by aw