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Aconitum photo

Aconitum is a flowering plant that belongs to the Ramunculaceae and is also known as Blue rocket, Queen of all Poisons, Devil's Helmet, Women's Bane, Mouse-bane, leopard's Bane, Wolf's Bane, Monkshood and Aconite. There are around 250 different species of Aconitum and they are mostly found on higher ground in mountains in the northern hemisphere. As many of Aconitum's names may suggest, most species of this plant are poisonous and should therefore be handled very carefully. Although dangerous, the Aconitum is visually striking with dark green leaves in a spiral arrangement and at the top of each tall stem the flowers of the plant are found in racemes with many stamens. Interestingly, due to the toxicology, many Aconitum species have been used in different parts of the world as poisons for arrows. While the Japanese use it to hunt bear, the Minaro of Ladakh use A. Napellus to hunt ibex with arrows. The Chinese though, not only use the poison for hunting, but warfare as well and the Aleut in the Alaskan Aleutian Islands use them to hunt whales. Such is the power of the toxin, one man would sit in a kayak with a lance with an Aconite-tip that he would use to hit a whale so to paralyse and drown it. If you are looking to make bulk purchases of flowers from the Aconitum; they are available in various colours from Astra Fund such as pink, yellow, white, purple and blue.