Spreading Dogbane (Apocynum androsaemifolium) is a branched perennial herb found in dry thickets and borders of woods and beaver ponds all across Canada.
It is appreciated mostly in spring when the clusters of small, pink, bell-shaped flowers are showy and sweet-scented. If you look closely at the five-part flowers, you will see deeper pink lines (honey guides) that lead insects into them.
The fruits are long, narrow, crimson, twin pods that contain numerous seeds equipped with tufts of silky white hairs that aid in wind dispersal.
The plant is a “rhizomatous perennial” which means that many plants come from a common root stock, thus Spreading. The branches if broken produce a bitter milky sap that is toxic (Plants of Southern Interior British Columbia and the Inland Northwest)…hence the name “dogbane”.