Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Any of several eastern North American plants of the genus Cardamine, such as the crinkleroot, having fleshy rhizomes and palmately divided leaves.
  • n. A parasitic European plant (Lathraea squamaria) having scaly cream-colored or pink stems and pinkish flowers.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Any of several species of flowering plants, of the genus Lathraea.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A plant whose roots are fancied to resemble teeth, as certain plants of the genus Lathræa, and various species of Dentaria. See coralwort.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A plant, Lathræa squamaria, so named from the tooth-like scales on the rootstock and the base of the stem, or according to some from the capsules, which when half-ripe strongly simulate human teeth. Also called clown's lungwort.
  • n. A plant of the genus Dentaria: same as coralwort, 1.
  • n. See Plumbago, 2.
  • n. The shepherd's-purse, Capsella Bursapastoris: an old use.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. North American herb with pungent scaly or toothed roots

Etymologies

From its tooth-shaped scales.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
tooth +‎ wort (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Hawk and I would push our way into the bush, plucking berries, digging up edible roots such as Indian potatoes and toothwort, pinching the heads from puffball mushrooms, stripping bark from hickory trees, which we boiled, to soften it.

    The Curse of the Wendigo

  • Cut leaf toothwort is out, in the Central Ohio rain.

    Back at the Peach Blossom Café...

  • He put the new bag among the others, taking time to consider the collection: toothwort, columbine, bloodroot.

    Pros and Cons of Wildflower Collection

  • Leafless herbs like beechdrops, lavender toothwort, and various bright-flowered small orchids, often without green leaves, were everywhere, growing from the roots of other living plants or their decaying remains.

    The Plains of Passage

  • The toothwort (_dentaria laciniata_) is sometimes known as the pepper-root, and every school boy and girl living near the woods is familiar with the taste of its tubers and the appearance of its cross-shaped flowers.

    Some Spring Days in Iowa

  • Pink: -- Spring beauty, toothwort, dog's tooth violet, hepatica.

    Some Spring Days in Iowa

  • But she found, among others, "Dutchman's breeches," the funny little white flower that looks like long underwear hanging upside down, and cut-leaved toothwort.

    The Washington Post: National, World & D.C. Area News and Headlines - washingtonpost.com

  • Also along the trail were my first views of early spring wildflowers, with clumps of Dutchman's breeches, cut-leaved toothwort and spring beauties.

    Berks county news

  • For example, club member Francy Cash recently discovered one of spring's early flowers, toothwort, or dentaria, abloom several paces off the trail.

    Weekend Mixtape

  • An Easter afternoon walk in KrisMar Woods was made more pleasant by the bluets, spring beauties, crowfoot toothwort, purple toothwort (almost through flowering), violets, gill-over-the-ground and re ...

    The Marietta Times

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