Fireweed

Chamerion angustifolium

Find this plant in Hortus Dijkspark.

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By Stefan Laarmann - Own work, CC BY 2.5, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=952795 -

Description

Epilobium angustifolium, or fireweed (also known as willow herb) is a perennial and part of the onagraceae family. It grows in rocky soil, woodland edges, and waste areas. It generally grows to about 2m tall and its distinctive bright pink flowers bloom from July - September. 

The herb can be used as a laxative, as well as to treat diarrhoea and IBS. A tea made with the leaves is also said to alleviate abdominal cramps. The leaves and young shoots can be used in salads or cooked as a vegetable. The flower stalks can be added to salads when the flowers are in bud. Additionally a rather sweet powder can be made by drying and grinding the young shoots of the plant. Some caution should be taken, though, as an infusion of the leaves has been reported to stupefy a person.