Harmonious Homestead
Connecting Farms & Families In Central Ohio since 2010


News, recipes, and stories from food systems work 

Acmella oleracea aka Toothache Plant aka Our Party Trick {Wordless Wednesday}

acmella oleracea plants toothache plant flowerseyeball plant flower

child eats toothache plant

sour face from toothache plantspitting out toothache plant

A friend wrote recently, "Seeing you always leaves a tingly feeling in my mouth." He's talking about toothache plant, Acmella oleracea, our party trick flower. Innocent in appearance and vigorously growing in our apothecary garden, we encourage guests to taste the small dense flowers. They give off the oddest sensation, described by some as sour, acidic, numbing, and 'like liking a 9V battery'. The effect dissipates after about five minutes.

Beyond the silly sensation, flowers and leaves of the toothache plant is useful for numbing the mouth, discovered by Brazilians as an herbal remedy for cold sores and dental problems. Some people, including Lil, munch on the flowers, also called eyeball plant, as a sour candy alternative. Or she may just like spitting out the flower on the ground.

We will collect seeds and have plenty to share if you want to grow your own next year.

What's the strangest edible you've grown?