Solidago (Goldenrod)

Part of the aster plant family, Solidago, or the goldenrod, is the genus name for between 100 and 120 different species, all of which produce fabulous flowers.

Most hail from North America, while some can be found in Europe, Asia, and South America.

For rays of golden yellow flowers, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a brighter option than solidago.

At A Glance: What You Should Know About Solidago

Solidago plants are perennials, ranging anywhere from 10cm tall to 3 feet tall depending on the species.

In some parts of the world, solidago is considered invasive, as they naturalize easily, and can have a detrimental effect on areas they aren’t native to, harming the native plants.

These plants bloom in summer and into fall, for as long as conditions allow, and are loved by pollinators everywhere, thanks to the pollen that the plants produce. 

Some people blame goldenrod for bringing out hayfever symptoms, but more often than not, ragweed, which flowers at a similar time, is the culprit. 

As goldenrods are pollinated by insects such as bees and butterflies, solidago plants don’t cause nearly as many allergic reactions as ragweed does, as the latter is pollinated by the wind.

To see more on the differences between the two plant, check out Ragweed vs Goldenrod

Solidago Name Meaning

The name solidago comes from the Latin Solido, which has several meanings, including to heal, to make safe, or to make whole.

This is backed up in tests done by the European Medicines Agency, who did some research into Solidago virgaurea, which demonstrated that the flowers had antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, diuretic, and antifungal properties, among others.

The Symbolism Behind Goldenrod

Solidago is steeped in symbolism, including good luck, prosperity, success, growth, and when given as a gift, to encourage the recipient to keep going. 

On the flip side, solidago also represents a warning or a caution, so make sure you’re sending the message you want to convey!

Solidago Uses

Solidago has many applications as a herbal remedy, including helping to alleviate gout, asthma, arthritis, skin complaints, and minor wounds.

It’s also been used to help kidney stones, bacterial infections, and cleansing the bladder.

Some Native American tribes use the plant to help reduce toothache or sore throats.

It also helps that goldenrod is safe to eat, and contains several nutrients.

Thomas Edison used goldenrod to produce rubber for industrial use, as the plant naturally contains rubber.

Unfortunately, in World War II, research found that the rubber was only present in the leaves, and the plant produced substandard quality rubber.

Goldenrod Growing Requirements

Goldenrods exclusively flower in golden yellow tones, and while the flowers are minute, they make up for this in their bright clusters, nearly covering the foliage in blankets of yellow.

Goldenrod is hardy in USDA zones 3 through to 9, though you may also grow it as a summer bedding plant, if you live somewhere colder.

Solidago plants are very low maintenance, and only require an average amount of water.

Two things that they absolutely require in order to thrive is full sunlight for as long as possible, and neutral or acidic soil which has plenty of drainage.

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