Triquetrum is a genus of flowering plants in the family Fabaceae, native to South America. They are known as “Carnations” because they have three petals and resemble flowers with carnation colored blossoms. There are over 1,000 species of triquetrums worldwide.[1] Some of them include:

The plant belongs to the mint family (Origanum) and it has been used medicinally since ancient times. It was first described by the Roman physician Galen in the 2nd century AD.

In Latin, triquetra means three-petaled flower. In Spanish, it means “three-clawed cat”. In French, it means “threescore-foursome”, which is how some botanists thought the name came into English.

History [ edit ]

A triquetrum plant in its natural habitat. The leaves are covered with tiny spines.

Trichetrum is believed to have originated from the Amazon rainforest, where it grew wild until European settlers brought it to cultivation around 1540.[2][3] By 1660, there were at least four varieties of triquetrum grown commercially in England;[4] these included the common variety called “triptych” (or “triple-t”), which got its name from its three-leaflet leaves, and the “Stern Dutch”, whose leaves were crumpled like a fan after flowering. Due to their pleasant smell, triquetra were used extensively in perfumes during the 16th and 17th century and in beer during the 17th century.

They were also believed to have medicinal qualities, thought to cure respiratory problems such as asthma and tuberculosis. Queen Elizabeth I was known to use the powdered leaves in her baths, and in 1694, botanist John Goodyer notes that the plant was also used for treating sore eyes.

Properties and poisonousness [ edit ]

The triquetrum plant contains a number of biologically active substances such as diterpenoids, flavonoids, triterpenoids, and volatile oils.

All parts of the plant except the pollen are poisonous if ingested, and can cause vomiting, stomach pains, and diarrhea. The toxic components of the plant can also cause kidney failure and liver damage, as well as affect fetal development during pregnancy. In large enough quantities, the plant is fatal to humans and other animals. However, the plant’s leaves can be made into a herbal tea that is safe for human consumption.

Uses [ edit ]

The triquetrum plant is used primarily for ornamental purposes, although it was also used for culinary, medicinal and ritualistic purposes in the past. The triquetrum plant has a history of use by several Native American tribes, including the Cherokee, Hidatsa, and the Ojibwe people. It was mainly used to treat respiratory issues such as colds and asthma. It was also used to treat tuberculosis and fevers.

Most of the triquetrum grown nowadays are grown for ornamental purposes.

The petals of the plant can be eaten as a culinary herb. They have a sour taste, and can be used in salads or in lemonades.

The leaves of the plant can also be made into a herbal tea. This tea has a sweet taste, and can be used to treat coughs and asthma. It is also used to induce vomiting in case of poisoning. The tea should not be consumed in large quantities, as it may cause liver damage.

The trichomes on the leaves of the plant contain biologically active substances such as diterpenoids, flavonoids, triterpenoids, and volatile oils. The trichomes give the leaves a frosted appearance, and can be harvested and distilled to make a poison for hunting.

The dried flowers of the plant can also be burned as incense, which gives off a pleasant scent.

The wood of the plant can be carved into figurines, which are popular among supernatural figure collectors.

The dried seeds of the plant can be strung into bracelets and necklaces.

Poisoning [ edit ]

The triquetrum plant is poisonous if ingested. The plant contains diterpenoids such as vernolic acid and triacontanol, as well as flavonoids and volatile oils. These cause the plant to be toxic to most animals. In large enough quantities, the plant can be fatal to humans as well.

Symptoms of poisoning include stomach pains, vomiting, diarrhea, and liver damage. If you suspect that you have come into contact with the plant and experience any of these symptoms, call your doctor immediately.

The main method that the triquetrum plant uses to discourage herbivores is through its trichomes. The dried leaves of the plant can be crushed and then distilled to create a poison. The poison can then be used on arrows and darts for hunting, provided that you do not have access to any firearms or other weapons.

Folklore [ edit ]

This plant has a rich history of supernatural folklore surrounding it. The folk tale most widely known is the story of Tom O’Lantern, a man who was cursed by the Irish Devil to travel the world with a single burning coal to light his way. In an effort to rid himself of the curse, he begged and pleaded with saints and priests for help. When that didn’t work, he resorted to using dark magic.

He soon found himself in an even worse situation, when he was tracked down by a furious mob for his wicked practices. He escaped, but only by lighting a circle of coal and running around it. He was never seen again, but for years people saw the ghost of a man with a burning coal carved into his face haunting the roads.

The Native American tribes near the plant have many ghost stories involving the plant. One tribe tells of a young man who had a secret love that he was not allowed to marry. In an act of desperation, he drank a tea made from dried triquetrum leaves in an effort to give him the courage to ask his love.

Sources & references used in this article:

Dorsal fractures of the triquetrum—avulsion or compression fractures? by M Garcia-Elias – Journal of Hand Surgery, 1987 –

Fractures of the triquetrum by NF Bartone, RV Grieco – JBJS, 1956 –

Chip fractures of the os triquetrum: the mechanism of injury by M Levy, RE Fischel, GM Stern… – The Journal of Bone …, 1979 –