Jul. 18, 2021
miner's lettuce, Claytonia perfoliata
Miner's lettuce indeed. But if you're not a miner tromping around western mountains, you might call it spring beauty. It certainly looks different than the spring beauties we're used to here in the East, but it is in the genus. And miner's did indeed eat it. The early growth makes a good salad, more rarely a potherb. Indians also partook, and used the plants medicinally for external applications like poultices and eyewash. Miner's lettuce grows on shores in AK, AZ, CA, CO, ID, MT, NM, NV, OR, SD, UT, WA, WY, and BC. The species has been reported from NH and GA, but it is not clear if those introductions have become established as part of their flora. Beal Gardens, MSU, 5/28/19. Miner's lettuce family, Montiaceae.