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The New International Encyclopædia/Dogbane

DOG'BANE (Apocynum). A genus of plants of the order Apocynaceæ. Some of the species are shrubby, some herbaceous; some extend into colder climates than is usual for plants of this order. The dogbane of North America (Apocynum androsæmifolium) is a perennial herbaceous plant, about four feet high, with smooth stem, much milky juice, smooth ovate leaves, and whitish rose-colored flowers. It grows in open barren places from Georgia to Canada. It is valued for the emetic, diaphoretic, and tonic properties of the bark of its root. The root of Canadian or Indian hemp (Apocynum cannabinum) possesses similar properties. This species abounds throughout the western portion of the United States. It furnishes a fine, long, strong, white, easily separable fibre, employed to a considerable extent by the Indians, who manufacture it into numerous articles. (See Apocynum.) For illustration, see Plate Dahlia.