Datura stramonium | ‘Devil’s Trumpet’, ‘Jimsonweed’, ‘Locoweed’, ‘Thornapple’, ‘Toloache’ | 25 seeds
Datura stramonium is a plant of the Solanaceae (or ‘Nightshade’) family, known variously as ‘Devil’s Cucumber’, ‘Devil’s Snare’, ‘Devil’s Trumpet’, ‘Devil’s Weed’, ‘False Castor Oil Plant’, ‘Hell’s Bells’, ‘Jamestown Weed’, ‘Jimsonweed’, ‘Locoweed’, ‘Moon Flower’, ‘Prickly-burr’, ‘Stinkweed’, ‘Thornapple’, ‘Tolguacha’ and ‘Toloache’. It’s generally believed to originate from Mexico.
Commonly found growing in many places around the world, stramonium takes the form of a strongly-scented annual bush or shrub, growing fairly erect to a height of roughly fifty to one hundred and fifty centimetres. The plant’s stout and leafy stem is smooth and a pale yellow-green in colour, forking into multiple branches with a leaf and a flower at each split. Stramonium’s toothy leaves range from around eight to twenty centimetres in length, with the top of them coloured a darker green than the bottom’s lighter hue. The species comprising the Datura genus are known for their distinctive trumpet-shaped flowers and stramonium possesses some of the most impressive and fragrant of them all! Flowering throughout the summer, they’re usually a creamy-white to light-violet in colour and grow up to about ten centimetres long. Datura stramonium is a night-blooming species and is consequently a popular snack for nocturnal moths!
At this point of our description, it should be noted that all parts of Datura stramonium contain highly dangerous (and wildly varying) levels of toxic deliriants – the tropane alkaloids atropine, hyoscyamine and scopolamine. Accidental ingestion of the plant consequently carries with it a great and serious risk of hospitalisation and/or fatal overdose; should this occur, please immediately seek medical assistance!
Not really a species we’d feel comfortable growing around young children, but that aside, stramonium is a surprisingly easy and rewarding plant to grow as a novel ornamental. Sow seed several feet apart in rich, calcareous soil – making sure to shelter it over winter in USDA Zones 8 and 9.
All the seed sold by Arkham’s Botanical was freshly and ethically sourced in 2018-2019