Dame’s Rocket is originally from Eurasia and was brought over to the U.S. in the 1600’s. It is now a common garden plant with small purple and pink flowers. Make sure to count the four distinct petals, as some native species of Phlox look very similar but have five petals. It blooms throughout the summer.
Plants usually grow two to three feet tall and have hairy leaves on both sides. Leaves can grow 3 to 8 inches long, are narrow and slightly toothed. Seed pods are narrow and grow from two to four inches long.
Photo from Northeast Illinois Invasive Plant Partnership http://niipp.net/?page_id=39
In A Modern Herbal (1931), Maud Grieve states that Dame’s Rocket seeds were “sometimes mixed with vinegar to cure freckles.” The Stewardship Network does not endorse this remedy and encourages you to wear your freckles proudly.