The prairie crocus is probably one of the first wildflowers I saw and recognized as a child. I remember loving the feel of their soft silky petals and stems and the colour is always so beautiful. Because I was born in Manitoba, I knew about this flower from a very young age as it is its floral emblem and though I was only aware of the purple and blue shades, I recently found out that there are also white varieties.
It is one of the first flowers to bloom in spring and though it is highly toxic, Blackfoot Indians used it to induce labour and abortions as well as a sedative for treating coughs. It can cause low blood pressure, diarrhea, vomiting, convulsions and coma.