Cedar (Cedrus atlantica )

Botanical Name  :Cedrus atlantica.
Family: Pinaceae
Genus: Cedrus
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Pinophyta
Class: Pinopsida
Order: Pinales
Species: C. atlantica
Synonyms : C. atlantica. (Endlicher.)Manetti ex Carriére.

Common Names: Cedar , Atlas cedarwood

Habitat :
Cedrus atlantica is native to the Atlas Mountains of Algeria (Tell Atlas) and Morocco (in the Rif and Middle Atlas, and locally in the High Atlas).A majority of the modern sources treat it as a distinct species Cedrus atlantica, but some sources consider it a subspecies of Lebanon Cedar (C. libani subsp. atlantica. It grows on the upper slopes of the Atlas mountains where there is little or no rain in the growing season but the soil is fed by the melting snow from the peaks above.

Description:

It is a medium-sized to large tree, 30–35 m (rarely 40m) tall, with a trunk diameter of 1.5–2 m.It is very similar in all characters to the other varieties of Lebanon Cedar; differences are hard to discern. The mean cone size tends to be somewhat smaller (although recorded to 12 cm,[1] only rarely over 9 cm long, compared to up to 10 cm in C. brevifolia, and 12 cm in C. libani) though with considerable overlap (all can be as short as 6 cm), while the leaf length (10–25 mm) is similar that of C. libani subsp. stenocoma, on average longer than C. brevifolia and shorter than C. libani subsp. libani, but again with considerable overlap. In addition, many (but far from all) of the cultivated trees have glaucous (bluish) foliage, more downy shoots, and can have more leaves in each whorl; young trees in cultivation often have more ascending branches than many cultivated C. libani subsp. libani.
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Atlas Cedar forms forests on mountain sides at 1,370 to 2,200 m, often in pure forests, or mixed with Algerian Fir, juniper, holm oak and maple. These forests can provide habitat for the endangered Barbary Macaque, Macaca sylvanus, a primate that had a prehistorically much wider distribution in northern Morocco and Algeria.

Cultivation
It is common in cultivation in temperate climates. In garden settings it is most often the glaucous forms that are planted as ornamental trees. The glaucous forms may be distinguished as a Cultivar Group Glauca Group. There are also fastigiate, pendulous, and golden-leaf forms in cultivation. It is useful in cultivation because it is more tolerant of dry and hot conditions than most conifers.

Medicinal Action & Uses:
Astringent* Diuretic* Expectorant* Sedative* Muscle Relaxant* Insect repellents*

Parts Used: Essense obtained from wood
Constituents: terpenic hydrocabons, cedrol, sequiterpenes

Common medical Uses: Acne * Bronchitis * Cellulite Reduction * Insect Repellent *

Cedarwood can treat serious  skin conditions like eczema
There are two commercial oils which are known as cedarwood today, Cedrus atlantica, Atlas cedarwood, which is a true cedarwood, and Juniperus virginiana, known as red cedar. Cedarwood is known for use in problem skin, as an insect repellant, and as an inhalent in respiratory complaints. It’s actions are sedative, astringent, and antiseptic. It can be used to treat oily skin and scalp, relieve itching, and more serious skin conditions like psoriasis and eczema, remembering that high concentrations will irritate the skin. Cedarwood is similar in action to the highly expensive sandalwood, it also has a sedative effect making it grounding in conditions of anxiety and nervous tension.

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Cedarwood oil is extracted from the red cedar, a coniferous tree native to North America, commonly used to make pencils.This tree is closely related to the yellow cedar, the source of thuja oil. Atlas cedarwood (true cedarwood) comes from Morocco and is the more favored oil in aromatherapy. Cedarwood oil is clear, and blends well with rose, juniper and cypress. It is used as a fixative in perfumes. The balsamic, woody aroma of red cedarwood has relaxing, meditative properties and adds a warm note to blends. Deep, woody and rich, the aroma of Atlas cedar inspires emotional strength and centering awareness. Therapeutically both oils resemble sandalwood to some degree, but are hotter and more toxic.

Side Effects: A skin irritant in high concentrations.

Other Uses:
Essential; Hedge; Hedge; Repellent; Wood.

An essential oil obtained from the distilled branches is used in perfumery, notably in jasmine-scented soaps. The essential oil also repels insects. Plants can be grown as a tall hedge. Wood – fragrant and durable. It is prized for joinery and veneer and is also used in construction. It is also used for making insect-repellent articles for storing textiles
Cedar plantations, mainly with Cedrus atlantica, have been established in southern France for timber production.

An Atlas Cedar is planted at the White House South Lawn in Washington D.C. Washington, DC. President Carter ordered a tree house built on the Cedar for his daughter Amy. The wooden structure was designed by the President himself, and is self supporting so as not to cause damage to the tree.

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://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atlas_Cedar
http://www.anniesremedy.com/herb_detail166.php

http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Cedrus+atlantica

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