Angelica archangelica. 208-365 days. Biennial in zones 4-9.
Angelica is one of those plants that seems ancient and archetypical. Plants are reminiscent of cow parsnip with similar large white flowered umbels. Big, lobed leaves atop long hollow stems have a perfumed, sweet scent and flavor. Medicinal, ornamental and edible, it is a plant that has been associated with humans for a long time. The giant flowers are full of nectaries that attract many beneficial insects such as honey bees predatory wasps, hover flies and lady bugs. In the early summer, the flowering stalks were a favorite perch for Lazuli Buntings. Flowers can be used fresh or dried, giving a bold accent to bouquets. The stalks can be peeled and candied for a delicious treat. A true biennial that may take a few years to flower if not sown early in the spring. May self seed. Herbally, Angelica is known to be energizing, warming and stimulating. Traditionally used for colds and respiratory issues. The roots are used to flavor gin and the seeds are used to flavor liqueurs such as Chartreuse, many bitters, and even Vermouth. Angelica is a truly useful and beautiful plant.