Root, scented like anise.
North, southward and westward.
Flowers: small; growing in umbels with bracts underneath. Calyx: five-toothed. Corolla: of five petals. Stamens: five. Pistil: one, with two long styles. Leaves: thrice-compound; leaflets; ovate; deeply toothed; downy. Stem: one to three feet high; hairy. Root: aromatic; sweet-scented; edible.
The sweet-cicely has a rather hard lot in life. It is a graceful, delicate plant, and the gifts of its rootstock are those that please mankind rather than do him harm; and yet, indirectly it has been the cause of much suffering. Unfortunately it bears so strong a likeness to the deadly water-hemlock (Plate VI) that the latter is being constantly mistaken for it, with fatal results. A close comparison of the two, however, will show that in character they are quite different. The sweet-cicely is found mostly in the rich woods.
Its generic name commemorates George Washington.