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rattlesnake plantain definitions
1: any of several small temperate and tropical orchids having mottled or striped leaves and spikes of small yellowish- white flowers in a twisted raceme [syn: rattlesnake plantain, helleborine]
noun Date: 1778 any of a genus (Goodyera) of orchids with variegated leaves and small flowers in a twisted spike
Plantain Plan"tain, n. [F., fr. L. plantago. Cf. Plant.] (Bot.) Any plant of the genus Plantago, but especially the P. major, a low herb with broad spreading radical leaves, and slender spikes of minute flowers. It is a native of Europe, but now found near the abode of civilized man in nearly all parts of the world. Indian plantain. (Bot.) See under Indian. Mud plantain, a homely North American aquatic plant (Heteranthera reniformis), having broad, reniform leaves. Rattlesnake plantain, an orchidaceous plant (Goodyera pubescens), with the leaves blotched and spotted with white. Ribwort plantain. See Ribwort. Robin's plantain, the Erigeron bellidifolium, a common daisylike plant of North America. Water plantain, a plant of the genus Alisma, having acrid leaves, and formerly regarded as a specific against hydrophobia. --Loudon.
Ground rattlesnake (Zo["o]l.), a small rattlesnake (Caudisona, or Sistrurus, miliaria) of the Southern United States, having a small rattle. It has nine large scales on its head. Rattlesnake fern (Bot.), a common American fern (Botrychium Virginianum) having a triangular decompound frond and a long-stalked panicle of spore cases rising from the middle of the frond. Rattlesnake grass (Bot.), a handsome American grass (Glyceria Canadensis) with an ample panicle of rather large ovate spikelets, each one composed of imbricated parts and slightly resembling the rattle of the rattlesnake. Sometimes called quaking grass. Rattlesnake plantain (Bot.), See under Plantain. Rattlesnake root (Bot.), a name given to certain American species of the composite genus Prenanthes (P. alba and P. serpentaria), formerly asserted to cure the bite of the rattlesnake. Calling also lion's foot, gall of the earth, and white lettuce. Rattlesnake's master (Bot.) (a) A species of Agave (Agave Virginica) growing in the Southern United States. (b) An umbelliferous plant (Eryngium yucc[ae]folium) with large bristly-fringed linear leaves. (c) A composite plant, the blazing star (Liatris squarrosa). Rattlesnake weed (Bot.), a plant of the composite genus Hieracium (H. venosum); -- probably so named from its spotted leaves. See also Snakeroot.
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