Indian Parsley

Genus Lomatium
Parsley Family (Apiaceae/Umbelliferae)



Lomatium dissectum


Indian Parsley
(Lomatium dissectum)

This is one of the largest and most common of the Lomatiums in our area. It has many common names. I first learned it as "Wild Carrot", because the book I was using at the time (Mountain Plants of Northeastern Utah) called it that. The leaves look very much like the carrot plants growing in your garden. They even smell like carrots when crushed.

In other books this plant is called "Indian Parsley", "Giant Parsley", "Indian Balsam", "Fernleaf Lomatium", "Carrotleaf", and "Giant Lomatium".

The roots of this plant are edible. (The Lomatium genus is often called "Biscuitroot" because many of its members were widely used as food sources by the western Indian tribes.)

However, extreme care should be taken before eating any part of a plant that resembles this one -- the leaves of the highly poisonous plant Poison Hemlock look very much like some of the Lomatiums.