Polemonium reptans L., Syst. Nat. ed. 10 2: 925 1759. ;

Polemonium reptans is a flowering plant in the genus Polemonium, native to eastern North America.

Common names include Abscess Root, Creeping or Spreading Jacob’s Ladder, False Jacob’s Ladder, American Greek Valerian, Blue bells, Stairway to Heaven, and Sweatroot
It is a perennial herbaceous plant growing to 50 cm tall, with pinnate leaves up to 20 cm long with 5–13 leaflets. The flowers are blue to violet, 1.3 cm long, with a five-lobed corolla. 
(From  Wikipedia on 2.10.13)


The dried roots have a slightly bitter and acrid taste[4]. They are alterative, astringent, diaphoretic, expectorant and pectoral[4, 61, 222, 238]. They can be used in an infusion with water or as a tincture with alcohol[4]. They are used internally in the treatment of coughs, colds, bronchitis, laryngitis, tuberculosis, feverish and inflammatory diseases, including skin conditions and poisonous bites[238]. The root is rarely used in modern herbalism[238]. It is harvested in the autumn and dried for later use[238]. 
A decoction of the whole plant is used as a hair rinse[213].
(From PFAF)



6 posts by 2 authors.
Requesting ID of this plant with purple flowers captured in Chicago, Illinois, USA in May 2013.

Polemonium reptans.

Thank you … for this ID as well..

Are the flowers in my pics in the bud stage?

The flowers in your photographs aren’t fully open and there are several tight-furled buds alongside



The Plant List (Unresolved)  GRIN  Flora of Missouri (As in bold at top)  Wikipedia  PFAF


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