Oenanthe javanica

Botanical Name : Oenanthe javanica
Family: Apiaceae
Genus: Oenanthe
Species: O. javanica
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Apiales

Synonyms :Oenanthe stolonifera – Wallich ex DC.,Sium javanicum – Blume.

Common Name : Rau Can,Japanese parsley or Chinese celery

Habitat ;Oenanthe javanica is native to E. Asia – China, Japan, Korea to Australia. It  grows in ditches, ponds and wet places in lowland areas all over Japan. Marshlands, lakeshores, muddy stream banks and shallow water at elevations of 600 – 3000 metres in most parts of China.

Description:
Oenanthe javanica is a perennial herb, growing to 1m.It is erect to decumbent, c. 1 m tall, glabrous. Stem stoloniferous, rooting at the nodes; roots fibrous. Upper leaves ternate; lower pinnate; leaflets oval to ovate; margin serrate. Umbels leaf opposed. Rays 10-20, stout. Calyx teeth dis¬tinct, linear, persistent. Pedicels 2-4 times longer than the flowers. Stylopodium conical, surrounded by the calyx teeth; styles 2 mm long. Fruit oblong, c. 2 mm long, 1 mm broad; dorsal and intermediate ridges obtuse, not prominent, lateral corky.

You may click to see pictures  of Oenanthe javanica

It is hardy to zone 10. It is in flower from June to August, and the seeds ripen from August to October. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects. The plant is self-fertile.
The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It requires wet soil and can grow in water.

Cultivation:
Requires a wet fertile soil or shallow water and a sunny position. This plant is quite possibly not hardy in Britain, gives a hardiness zone of 10, which means that it is not frost tolerant. However  say that it grows in all areas of China and lowland Japan and this should include areas that do experience frosts and snow. Another report says that many forms of this species are not frost-hardy, though some forms have hardy roots. The sub-species O. javanica rosthornii is found at elevations up to 4000 metres in China and is sometimes also found in drier habitats such as grassland at forest margins – this form should be hardier than the species. There is also a lot of confusion over the correct name for this species. Some reports give O. stolonifera. DC. or O. stolonifera. Wall as the correct name whilst other reports say that these names are synonyms of O. javanica.  says that O. stolonifera japonica. (Miq.)Maxim. is a synonym of O. javanica. The Flora of China treats this as a highly variable single species under the name O. javanica and recognizes at least one sub-species. This species is occasionally cultivated for its edible root or for its edible leaves according to another report, there are some named varieties. There are two main forms of this species, a red form has edible shoots whilst a white form is grown for its medicinal root. In Japan this plant and six other herbs are customarily boiled in rice gruel on January 7th. The cultivar ‘Su Zhou’ is medium early and has few fibres plus an excellent taste.

Propagation:
Seed – sow spring in a cold frame. Germination is erratic. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in the summer. Division in spring. Large divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions. We have found that it is better to pot up the smaller divisions and grow them on in light shade in a cold frame until they are well established before planting them out in late spring or early summer. Layering[200]. Stem tip cuttings. Any part of the stem roots easily

Edible Uses:
Edible Parts: Leaves; Root; Seed.

Young leaves and stems – raw or cooked. The leaves are also used as a seasoning in soups etc. The flavour is reminiscent of carrots or parsley. The young shoots that sprout from the root in winter are best. A major vegetable in many parts of the Orient, the leaves are a rich source of vitamins and minerals (Analysis available). Root – cooked. Highly esteemed in Japan, the roots can grow up to 30cm long in water. Some caution is advised, see the notes above on toxicity. Seed is said to be edible.

Chemical Composition:
Figures in grams (g) or miligrams (mg) per 100g of food.

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Leaves (Dry weight)
298 Calories per 100g
*Water: 0%

*Protein: 19.9g; Fat: 3.2g; Carbohydrate: 62.8g; Fibre: 12.8g; Ash: 14.9g;

*Minerals – Calcium: 1202mg; Phosphorus: 585mg; Iron: 32mg; Magnesium: 0mg; Sodium: 192mg; Potassium: 4713mg; Zinc: 0mg;

*Vitamins – A: 24mg; Thiamine (B1): 0.64mg; Riboflavin (B2): 2.34mg; Niacin: 10.6mg; B6: 0mg; C: 149mg;

Medicinal Uses:
Depurative; Febrifuge; Styptic.

The whole plant is depurative, febrifuge and styptic. A decoction is used in the treatment of epidemic influenza, fever and discomfort, jaundice, haematuria and metrorrhagia. The seed contains 3.5% essential oil. This is effective at large dilutions against pathogenic fungi.

A decoction of the whole plant is used in the treatment of epidemic influenza, fever and discomfort, jaundice, haematuria and metrorrhagia.   The seed contains 3.5% essential oil. This is effective at large dilutions against pathogenic fungi.

Other Uses:
Essential; Ground cover.

Spreading rapidly by means of suckers, it makes a good ground cover plant for wet situations. The variegated cultivar ‘Flamingo’ has been especially recommended.

Scented Plants

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider

Resources:
http://digedibles.com/database/plants.php?Oenanthe+javanica
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oenanthe_javanica
http://www.efloras.org/florataxon.aspx?flora_id=5&taxon_id=200015685
http://web.telecom.cz/atzhoranek/kat1/oenanthe_javanica_flamingo.htm
http://www.victoria-adventure.org/aquatic_plants/craig2/oenanthe_javanica.html

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