Menispermum davuricum

Botanical Name : Menispermum davuricum
Family : Menispermaceae
Genus: Menispermum (men-ee-SPER-mum) (Info)
Species: davuricum

Synonyms : Menispermum dauricum (Auct.)
Common Name: Dahurian moonseed
Habitats: Menispermum davuricum is native to East AsiaSiberia to N. China. It grows on sparse forests ad bushes at the road.
Description:
Menispermum davuricum is a deciduous Climber growing to 3.6 m (11ft 10in) at a fast rate.
It is an interesting climber with attractive foliage that turns yellow in autumn. Large (10-20 cm across), heart-shaped, deep green leaves have 3-7 barely discernible lobes. Slender twining shoots densely entangle a support covering it with tiling leaves. Suitable for growing over arbours, fences, pergolas, trellises and other supports, it appreciates a site in full sun. Perfect as a screening or a ground cover plant. Prune when needed. When the plant has excessively spread out, every 3-4 years it can be cut off at 20-40cm above the ground. Spreading stolons should be kept under control.

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It is hardy to zone (UK) 4. It is in flower from Jun to July, and the seeds ripen from Oct to November. The flowers are dioecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but only one sex is to be found on any one plant so both male and female plants must be grown if seed is required)The plant is not self-fertile.

Cultivation :
Succeeds in any moderately fertile soil that does not dry out excessively in summer, in sun or partial shade. Prefers full sun. This species is hardy to about -30°c, but, due to a lack of summer heat, the plants usually produce soft growth in mild maritime areas and this can be cut to the ground at temperatures around -5 to -10°c. The plants do not require pruning, but can benefit from being cut back to ground level every 2 – 3 years in order to keep them tidy. Closely related to M. canadense, differing mainly in its annual or rarely persistent aerial stems. A twining plant, it spreads freely by means of underground suckers. Dioecious. Male and female plants must be grown if seed is required.

Propagation :
Seed – sow late winter in a greenhouse. Two months cold stratification speeds up germination so it might be better to sow the seed as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame. Germination is usually good. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Cuttings of mature wood, autumn in a frame. Division of suckers in early spring. The suckers can be planted out direct into their permanent positions, though we prefer to pot them up and grow them on in light shade in a greenhouse or cold frame until they are established

Medicinal Uses:    The root is antirheumatic and is also used in the treatment of cancer. The whole plant is used to alleviate skin allergies and is also used in the treatment of cancer.

Known Hazards : The whole plant is poisonous

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://e-clematis.com/en_GB/p/Menispermum-davuricum-Dahurian-Moonseed/149
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Menispermum+davuricum
http://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/go/80723/

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