And where the ground is always wet, I keep seeing stands of Devil's Club, its wide leaves serving as stern "Keep Off" signs. Oplopanax horridus, they call it; it's well named, both in English and scientific notation.
|The leaves get up to 15 inches across.|
|And the plant can be 15 feet tall, or more. This one was a new plant at the edge of a recent clearing, and only about 8 feet high.|
|The whole plant is covered with vicious spines.|
|Really vicious. Up to an inch long, very sharp. They break off easily to an incautious touch, sting and fester.|
|Even the leaves are spined, top and bottom.|
"A piece of Devil's club hung over a doorway is said to ward off evil." (Wikipedia)
But you'd need thick gloves and strong boots to harvest that piece safely. I think I'll stick to vanilla leaf.