Wildflowers & Trees Of Appalachia

Dying Queen Anne’s Lace

queen anns lace in a jar of red water

Queen Anne’s Lace dots the roadsides and fields with white where I live. According to legend, Queen Anne was tatting lace when she pricked her finger and left a dot of blood in the center of the lace which is the dark spot that can be seen on some of the flowers.

I always associate Queen Anne’s Lace with chiggers. I swear when I was little Granny told me to never touch them or I’d get chiggers all over me.

Queen Anne’s Lace are a pretty addition to any summertime bouquet. You can easily change the color of the blooms by placing a few drops of food coloring in water and letting the flower stand in the water over night.

As the flower ‘drinks’ the water the blooms began to change color. This is a neat activity to do with kids.

The girls used to love to go out and pick Queen Anne’s Lace and they equally loved getting to make a mess with my food coloring and a jar of water. The resulting colors varied, but they were always pretty.


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  • Reply
    August 8, 2019 at 9:45 am

    The leaves of this plant (wild carrot) make delicious pesto! I make mine with hard cheddar and walnuts or pecans if I have them. The seeds also can be ground for a spice similar to anise, but should be avoided by women who are pregnant or trying to become pregnant.

  • Reply
    August 7, 2019 at 8:17 am

    We used to do this with dandelions when I was little – it was magical to watch red or blue lines running up the stem and into the individual petals! Thanks for bringing back that nice memory, Tipper 🙂

  • Reply
    August 6, 2019 at 1:21 pm

    I so enjoy Queen Ann’s lacy loveliness….. when I begin to see it grow I know spring is sailing into summer, seems like only yesterday I was watching for dandelions to be tickled out of the ground by the warming rays of a spring season’s sun. I call it ” Summer Snow” ,,, and with it’s lacy attributes, I always wondered if that would have been what ”Manna ” might had resembled after the morning dew as it lay on the swarth of land in the days of Moses in the wilderness :), God’s handiwork…day to day pours forth speech, night after night shows forth knowledge………………..

  • Reply
    Ed Ammons
    August 6, 2019 at 12:44 pm

    Other creatures are just like people when it comes to choosing their food. They like it when it is young and tender. If you don’t get chiggers any more it don’t mean there are no chiggers where you live, it just means you are too OLD and tough to gnaw on. Send your grandkids out into the weeds. They will find you some chiggers. Or, the chiggers will find them.

  • Reply
    Brenda Schenck
    August 6, 2019 at 11:31 am

    Brings back memories for sure…they are so pretty…growing up on a farm with my grandparents, my Granny called them “Chigger Weeds”..so I didn’t know true name until later in years…I just knew to stay away!…lol

  • Reply
    Garland Davis
    August 6, 2019 at 11:21 am

    Two things we don’t have in Hawaii; snakes and chiggers. I am eternally grateful.

  • Reply
    Margie Lindsey
    August 6, 2019 at 10:58 am

    When I was about 5 years old I picked some Queen Anne’s Lace. Because it was so pretty I carried it into the house to give to my Mama. When she turned to look at my bouquet, she cried out in alarm, “Get those flowers out of the house! They’ll be covered with bugs!” Mortified, I ran outside to fling them away and have always recalled that moment whenever I see those flowers. They’re still pretty, though!

  • Reply
    August 6, 2019 at 10:44 am

    Queen Ann’s Lace – we have it on all the road sides I travel. I so enjoy its intricate beauty and it brings a smile to my face because I can just see my Aunt Mary toss her head back laughing so hard trying to tell me about the time that she and my Mother saw a large amount of Queen Ann’s Lace growing in a meridian dividing a four lane highway. In a split second they decided they were going to pick some so they pulled over to the side of the road and walked across to pick a bunch. It was during a heat wave where MS was experiencing 100 plus heat, and Aunt Mary looked over at Mother and said, “What would Momma think of this?” Well, my Grandmother would probably have shook her head but she would have been amazed at the creative talent of the two. They took the Queen Ann’s Lace home, dried them, then cut off the stem right up to the back of the flower. They sprayed them with hair spray and quickly shook silver glitter on them. They used them as decorations on their Christmas tree and I must say they keep wonderfully and really sparkle on the tree. I don’t have the creative mind like my Mother and I would have never thought of making Christmas decorations out of them but I sure am glad I have Mother’s box of them to enjoy every Christmas. I heard about chiggers all my life and somehow or other was able to stay away from tall grass that usually was infested with them.

  • Reply
    Ron Stephens
    August 6, 2019 at 9:12 am

    Did not know how to change the color. I’ll have to try it. Also do not recall QAL associated with chiggers, though I could see why; good height to hitch a ride on a critter, lots of tiny spaces to hide in until then.

    I have read that carrots were developed from Queen Anne’s lace. Another name for QAL is wild carrot. I can vouch for them tasting like carrots but are much tougher.

    • Reply
      aw griff
      August 6, 2019 at 11:04 am

      Ron. I’ve heard them called wild carrots too and have tasted the roots and yes they do taste like carrots but didn’t know carrots were developed from them.

  • Reply
    Ken Roper
    August 6, 2019 at 9:00 am

    When I was little and began to notice Mountain Flowers, I came running into the house one day wanting to know the name of it. Mama said “Kiss me and I’ll tell ya.” I had to Kiss her to find out the name. We never heard of Queen Ann’s Lace, no wonder folks look at me strange when I say “Kiss me and I’ll tell ya.” But they are covered-up in Chiggers, you can see ’em if you look closely.

    We use to have ’em everywhere and Mama had warned us boys about them Chiggers. One time we had a cousin staying part of the Summer with us and he got covered up in Chiggers. At night seems to be when they bother you the most, so Daddy had enough of him Squirming and etching. He took him out on the porch where he kept gas and oil mixed, and rubbed him down in that stuff. It cured the etching but left him blistered. And the next day Mama had to Doctor him for that. Poor little thing, he learned the hard way! …Ken

  • Reply
    Ann Applegarth
    August 6, 2019 at 8:53 am

    Tipper, your photo doesn’t look like the Queen Anne’s Lace where I’ve lived, which looks more like small wedding bouquets of tiny white flowers. Maybe two varieties? I’m delighted with your coloring — I have done that with plumes of pampas grass, but never thought to try it with flowers! But Miss Cindy got it just right about chiggers! Fortunately we don’t have those nasty little things in New Mexico, but I remember them well.

  • Reply
    August 6, 2019 at 8:28 am

    Have you ever heard of putting the seed from Queen Ann’s lace in soup beans for seasoning ?

    • Reply
      aw griff
      August 6, 2019 at 10:59 am

      No I haven’t tried but I wouldn’t care to try that. After reading what I just wrote and the confusion over the expression wouldn’t care. I mean that wouldn’t bother me to try that and if I remember I will do it.

    • Reply
      August 8, 2019 at 9:47 am

      The seeds do make a nice seasoning but should be avoided by pregnant women and women trying to become pregnant.

  • Reply
    Wanda Devers
    August 6, 2019 at 8:04 am

    Yes, we were told it would get chiggers all over us. I don’t know if it’s because we aren’t as rural Now or what, but I can’t remember when I last had a chigger. I remember getting what felt like millions of them–especially picking blackberries.

  • Reply
    aw griff
    August 6, 2019 at 7:59 am

    My Wife loves the Queen Ann’s Lace but I like the Chickory much better. Speaking of chiggers. I took my Grandson fishing last week. He had 4 chiggers on his right arm and 22 on his left and I only got 3 on my legs.
    A friend of mine went hunting with another fellow and they came to a large patch of weeds they needed to go through and my friend wouldn’t go. The fellow made small of him about being afraid of copperheads. He said I’m not going through those weeds and I’m not afraid of snakes but I’m afraid of chiggers!

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    August 6, 2019 at 5:44 am

    I always thought Queen Ann’s lace was pretty but I also associated it with chiggers …pesky little critters can make your life miserable!

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