Plume Poppy(Macleaya cordata )

Botanical Name : Macleaya cordata
Family : Papaveraceae
Genus: Macleaya
Synonyms: Bocconia cordata – Willd.
Common Name :Plume Poppy
Parts  Used :Fruit, whole herb
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class
: Magnoliopsida
Order: Ranunculales
Species: M. cordata


Habitat:
E. Asia – E. China, Japan.  Grassy places, open meadows and the grassy floors of Cryptomeria plantations.Cultivated Beds;

Description:

Perennial growing to 2m by 1m at a fast rate.
It is hardy to zone 3. It is in flower from July to August. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs)

Branched, 7 to 8 foot flower stems impose clouds of pinkish tan flowers on the landscape from early to late summer. Deeply lobed leaves are grey-green and up to ten inches wide. Prefers, rich, moist soil and at least half a day of sun. Should not be located close to small, delicate plants as it will crowd them out. The Plume Poppy is an attractive way of adding interest to wilder corners of the garden. With its tall silhouette and magnificent, pinkish-tan flower spikes throughout the summer, it works well along side Gunneras or Heracleums.

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The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It requires moist soil.

Cultivation :
Requires a well-drained deep soil preferring a sunny sheltered position but tolerating light shade. Easily grown in sun or partial shade. Hardy to about -15°c. A very ornamental plant, it can be grown as an isolated specimen in a lawn. An excellent plant for sub-tropical bedding. Plants have spreading underground rhizomes and can be invasive.

Propagation
Seed – we have no information on this species but suggest sowing the seed as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame in the autumn. Stored seed should be sown in the early spring. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Division in the dormant season. Basal cuttings in late spring. Harvest the shoots with plenty of underground stem when they are about 8 – 10cm above the ground. Pot them up into individual pots and keep them in light shade in a cold frame or greenhouse until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the summer. Cuttings from the axils of larger leaves in early summer. Root cuttings in the winter.

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Constituents:-

Specification (Active ingredient & Assay):
Total alkaloid 10%, 50%, 98% by UV
Sanguinarine 10%, 15%, 40% 90% by HPLC
Chelerythrine 10%, 20%, 50%, 90% by HPLC

Medicinal Actions & Uses:
Carminative; Depurative; Diuretic; Stings.

The whole plant is analgesic, antioedemic, carminative, depurative and diuretic. The juice from the stems of the leaves is used to treat insect bites. A decoction of the leaves and stems is used in the treatment of ringworm. The poisonous sap is used to counter poisonous sores.

Other Uses

Insecticide; Musical.

The dried hollow stems can be used as whistles. Kills insects and mosquito larvae. The flowers are used to kill maggots whilst the whole plant is used to kill larvae and insects.

Known Hazards:    The sap is very poisonous.

Disclaimer:The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider
Resources:
http://www.pfaf.org/database/plants.php?Macleaya+cordata
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Macleaya_cordata
http://www.extract-china.com/macleaya%20cordata%20extract.htm
http://www.backyardgardener.com/plantname/pd_d1d2.html
http://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.robsplants.com/images/portrait/MacleayaCordata040629.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.robsplants.com/plants/MacleCorda.php&usg=__V2HiRQ_tt7NSwryn9TH6Di_hOHs=&h=502&w=340&sz=43&hl=en&start=2&itbs=1&tbnid=RK7ttX43H5jJtM:&tbnh=130&tbnw=88&prev=/images%3Fq%3DMacleaya%2Bcordata%26hl%3Den%26rls%3DWZPA,WZPA:2006-10,WZPA:en%26tbs%3Disch:1

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