Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie
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  • Smooth Meadow Rue

    SCIENTIFIC NAME: Thalictrum dasycarpum

    COMMON NAME: Smooth Meadow Rue, Purple Meadow Rue, Tall Meadow Rue, Meadow Rue

    BLOOM TIME: June, July


    • Stout, erect plant reaches from 3-5 ft. tall with purple stem. 
    • Stem may have whitish hair & branches near the top.
    • Leaves up to 2 in. long with 3 pointed lobes at tip. Separate male plants have showy, thread-llike stamens; females have burr-like heads.
    • Habitat: sun, stream banks, open woods & prairies, moist to mesic conditions.
    • Dakota Nation broke off fruits for their pleasant odor, later rubbing & scattering them over clothing. The hollow stems were used to make toy flutes for young boys. 
    • Pawnee Nation mixed plant parts with a white clay as a horse stimulant by applying it to their muzzle. This was done during forced marches of 3 days or more duration in order to escape enemies.