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Monkshood blooming along the Westfall Meadow trail

Monkshood (Aconitum columbianum)

Aliases:  Columbian Monkshood, Western Monkshood

Family:  Buttercup (Ranunculaceae)

Monkshood is common to mid-elevation meadows and stream banks in Yosemite, particularly along Glacier Point Road. It's tall and lanky, capable of surpassing six feet. It's also notably toxic; Plants for a Future claims that mere skin contact can make people feel a bit off.

Blooms:  June - August

Lifespan:  Perennial

Origins:  Native  (see distribution maps for California and US/Canada)

Aconitum columbianum etymology:  Aconitum is the ancient Greek name for the genus. Columbianum indicates a plant found in western North America. It's a tribute to Christopher Columbus, who, to his credit, did get within a few thousand miles of western North America on his voyages.

This Photo:  Near a stream on the Westfall Meadow trail, mid July

Other Resources:   CalFlora  ·  CalPhotos  ·  USDA  ·  eFloras.org