Country of origin: United States
As of 2015, sources differ significantly in the species they use for Mandragora plants native to the Mediterranean region. Because mandrakes contain tropane alkaloids and the shape of their roots often resembles human figures, they have been associated with a variety of superstitious practices throughout history. They have long been used in magic rituals, today also in contemporary pagan traditions such as Wicca and Odinism.
It is a very variable perennial herbaceous plant with a long thick root, often branched. It has almost no stem, the leaves being borne in a basal rosette. The leaves are very variable in size and shape, with a maximum length of 45 cm (18 in). They are usually either elliptical in shape or wider towards the end (obovate), with varying degrees of hairiness.
Also known as Mayapple. Mandrake is a perennial plant found in deciduous forests of eastern North America. The plant was used by Native Americans to induce vomiting and diarrhea. The ripened fruit of Mandrake may be edible in small amounts, but poisonous in larger amounts. Mandrake should only be applied to the skin in small areas. It can be poisonous if too much is used topically.