Pontederia cordata

Botanical Name ; Pontederia cordata
Family: Pontederiaceae
Genus: Pontederia
Species: P. cordata
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Commelinales

Common Name ;Pickerelweed (USA) or Pickerel weed (UK)

Habitat ;Pontederia cordata is native to Eastern N. America – Nova Scotia to Florida andTexas. A garden escape occ naturalized in Britain.
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.

Description:
Pontederia cordata is a perennial herb  growing to 0.75m by 0.45m.
It is hardy to zone 3. It is in flower from July to September. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees.
CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES
The species grows as an emergent plant, that is, in flooded conditions, so the plant is generally dependent upon aerenchyma in the stem to carry oxygen into the roots. Its metabolism, is, however, also tolerant of low soil oxygen. It is often found in areas where water levels fluctuate naturally, with spring flooding and later summer emergence. Apart from flooding, the species is also influenced by soil fertility, tending to grow in the more fertile bays of large lakes, for example. Like many aquatic plants, it is negatively affected by salinity and grazing. It is also negatively affected by competition from other wetland plants. Like many wetland plants, it can survive infavorable conditions as buried seeds in the soil.

The plant flowers in late summer. The purple flowers have yellow markings which may assist in attracting bees for pollination.One bee species known to pollinate the flowers is Dufourea (Halictoides) novaeangliae. Once the plant begins to produce seeds, the stem supporting the infloresence bends to submerse the fruits and seeds. Seeds are dormant at the time of dispersal and will not germinate without stratification for 6-8 weeks.

The flowers of the species are tristylous, meaning the styles of individual plants occur in three different morphs, with most populations containing all three. Leaf shape, which varies considerably across populations, within populations, and even within individuals, has been the source for many taxonomic synonyms. Like many wetland and aquatic plants, the species can reproduce asexually by means of branching rhizomes, and hence can form large clonal stands.

Cultivation;  
A water or bog garden plant, it requires a rich soil[56] and prefers growing in water 15 – 30 cm deep. Plants are hardy to about -25°c. A very ornamental plant, it forms spreading patches by means of a thick creeping rhizome. There is a species of bee (Dufourea novae-angliae) which visits this plant for nectar and pollen and does not visit any other species of plant. The reproductive biology of Pontederia cordata has been well studied. It is a tristylous species, and most populations contain all three forms. At least some degree of self-incompatibility exists, being strongest with the short-style forms and weakest with the midstyle forms.

Propagation: 
Seed – best sown as soon as it is ripe in pots standing in 2cm of water in a cold frame. Cover the seed lightly with silver sand. Submerse in 3cm depth of water after the seedlings emerge. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in water 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 is best in April but it can be done at almost any time of the year. Very easy, larger 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. Lateral shoots.

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

Seed – raw, cooked like rice or dried and ground into a powder. A very acceptable nutty flavour and texture when raw, they are said to be excellent if the seed is lightly roasted in an oven. Young leafstalks – raw or cooked. The whole plant is edible cooked or raw. It can be added to salads, cooked like spinach or added to soups.

Medicinal Uses:  
An infusion of the plant has been used as a contraceptive.

Other Uses:
Pickerelweed near Ottawa, OntarioThis plant is cultivated as an ornamental garden plant, and has gained the Royal Horticultural Society‘s Award of Garden Merit

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://www.pfaf.org/user/plant.aspx?latinname=Pontederia+cordata
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pontederia_cordata

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Myroxylon pereirae

Botanical Name : Myroxylon pereirae
Family: Fabaceae
Subfamily: Faboideae
Tribe: Sophoreae
Genus: Myroxylon
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Fabales

Common Name :Peru Balsam

Habitat ; Myroxylon pereirae is native to tropical America

Description:
Myroxylon pereirae is a large tree growing to 40 m tall, with evergreen pinnate leaves 15 cm long with 5-13 leaflets. The flowers are white with yellow stamens, produced in racemes. The fruit is a pod 7–11 cm long, containing a single seed.

Myroxylon balsamum seedlings in Udawattakele F...

Myroxylon balsamum seedlings in Udawattakele Forest, Kandy (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The wood is dark brown with a deep red heartwood. Natural oils grant it excellent decay resistance. In fact, it is also resistant to preservative treatment. Its specific gravity is 0.74 to 0.81.

As regards woodworking, this tree is regarded as moderately difficult to work but can be finished with a high natural polish; it tends to cause some tool dulling.

click to see the picture

Its sweetish scent, reminiscent of vanilla and green olives, has caused it to be used in the manufacture of perfumes as a source for Balsam. Balsam of Peru is used as a flavoring and fragrance in many products and can cause allergic reactions.

Peru Balsam aromatic resin is extracted from the variant Myroxylon balsamum pereirae, native from Central America farther north. The name is a misinterpretation of its origin, since it was originally assembled and shipped to Europe from the ports of Callao and Lima, in Peru, even though the species is not indigenous to Peru. The indigenous use of Peru Balsam led to its export to Europe in the seventeenth century, where it was first documented in the German Pharmacopedia. Today El Salvador is the main exporter of Peru Balsam where it is extracted under a plainly handicraft process.[4]

Peru balsam has uses in medicine, pharmaceutical, in the food industry and in perfumery. It has been used as a cough suppressant, in the treatment of dry socket in dentistry, in suppositories for hemorrhoids, the plants have been reported to inhibit Mycobacterium tuberculosis as well as the common ulcer-causing bacteria, H. pylori in test-tube studies, so it is used topically as a treatment of wounds and ulcers, as an antiseptic and used as an anal muscle relaxant. Peru Balsam can be found in diaper rash ointments, hair tonics, antidandruff preparations, and feminine hygiene sprays and as a natural fragrance in soaps, detergents, creams, lotions, and perfumes

Medicinal Uses;
Peru Balsam has been in the US Pharmacopeia since 1820 used for bronchitis, laryngitis, dysmenorrhea, diarrhea, dysentery and leucorrhea and has also been used as a food flavoring and fragrance material for its aromatic vanilla like-odor. Today it is used extensively in topical preparations for the treatment of wounds, ulcers, and scabies, and can be found in hair tonics, anti-dandruff preparations, feminine hygiene sprays and as a natural fragrance in soaps, detergents, creams, lotions and perfumes.
Peruvian balsam is strongly antiseptic and stimulates repair of damaged tissue.  It is usually taken internally as an expectorant and decongestant to treat emphysema, bronchitis, and bronchial asthma.  It may also be taken to treat sore throats and diarrhea.  Externally, the balsam is applied to skin afflictions.  It also stimulates the heart, increases blood pressure and lessens mucus secretions.  Traditionally used for rheumatic pain and skin problems including scabies, diaper rash, bedsores, prurigo, eczema, sore nipples and wounds.  It also destroys the itch acarus and its eggs.

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://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Myroxylon
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_OPQ.htm

http://www.erbesalute.it/web/scheda.asp?id=2440

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Piper kadsura

Botanical Name : Piper kadsura
Family: Piperaceae
Genus: Piper
Species: P. kadsura
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Piperales

Common Name :Japanese Pepper

Habitat :Piper kadsura is native to  Eastern Asiati countries

Description:
This is an evergreen vine capable of growing straight up a tree trunk. It is reported to be dioecious so a single plant will not produce seeds. It grows well in shade in a well-drained soil and responds to irrigation. Catalogs guess that it will be cold hardy in zone 8b and south.

CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES

English: Piper kadsura – Japanese Pepper, f?t?...

English: Piper kadsura – Japanese Pepper, futokazura (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Stems rooting at nodes, ridged, sparsely pubescent when young. Petiole 1-1.5 cm, sometimes pubescent, sheathed at base only; leaf blade ovate or long ovate, 6-12 × 3.5-7 cm, ± leathery, abaxially usually pubescent on veins, adaxially glabrous, with uniformly scattered raised white glands, base cordate to rounded, ± symmetric, apex acute or obtuse; veins 5, apical pair arising up to 1.5 cm above base, others basal; reticulate veins conspicuous. Spikes leaf-opposed. Male spikes yellow, ascending, 3-5.5(-12) cm × ca. 2.5 mm; peduncle 0.6-1.5 cm; rachis hispidulous; bracts yellow, orbicular, ca. 1 mm wide, peltate, margin irregular, abaxially roughly white pubescent, ± sessile. Stamens 2 or 3; filaments short. Female spikes shorter than leaf blades; peduncle ca. as long as petioles; rachis and bracts as in male spikes. Ovary globose, distinct; stigmas 3 or 4, linear, pubescent. Drupe brownish yellow, globose, 3-4 mm in diam. Fl. May-Aug.

Medicinal Uses:
This pepper is used as a stomachic, expectorant, and stimulant.

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://www.efloras.org/florataxon.aspx?flora_id=2&taxon_id=200005569
http://southeastgarden.com/piper.html
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_OPQ.htm

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Parsley

Botanical Name :Petroselinum crispum
Family: Apiaceae
Genus: Petroselinum
Species: P. crispum
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Apiales

Common Name :Parsley

Habitat :Parsley is native to the central Mediterranean region (southern Italy, Algeria and Tunisia), naturalized elsewhere in Europe, and widely cultivated as an herb, a spice and a vegetable.

Description:
Garden parsley is a bright green, hairless, biennial, herbaceous plant in temperate climates, or an annual herb in subtropical and tropical areas.]

click to see the pictures……>…(01).....(1)...(2).….(3)…..(4)....

Where it grows as a biennial, in the first year, it forms a rosette of tripinnate leaves 10–25 cm long with numerous 1–3 cm leaflets, and a taproot used as a food store over the winter. In the second year, it grows a flowering stem to 75 cm tall with sparser leaves and flat-topped 3–10 cm diameter umbels with numerous 2 mm diameter yellow to yellowish-green flowers. The seeds are ovoid, 2–3mm long, with prominent style remnants at the apex. One of the compounds of the essential oil is apiol. The plant normally dies after seed maturation.

In cultivation, parsley is subdivided into several cultivar groups depending on the form of the plant, which is related to its end use. These are often treated as botanical varieties, but are cultivated selections, not of natural botanical origin.

Leaf parsley:
The two main groups of parsley used as herbs are curly leaf (i.e.) (P. crispum crispum group; syn. P. crispum var. crispum) and Italian, or flat leaf (P. crispum neapolitanum group; syn. P. crispum var. neapolitanum); of these, the neapolitanum group more closely resembles the natural wild species. Flat-leaved parsley is preferred by some as it is easier to cultivate, being more tolerant of both rain and sunshine, and has a stronger flavor (though this is disputed), while curly leaf parsley is preferred by others because of its more decorative appearance in garnishing.   A third type, sometimes grown in southern Italy, has thick, celery-like leaf stems

 

Root Parsley:...CLICK & SEE
Another type of parsley is grown as a root vegetable, the Hamburg root parsley (P. crispum radicosum group, syn. P. crispum var. tuberosum). This type of parsley produces much thicker roots than types cultivated for their leaves. Although seldom used in Britain and the United States, root parsley is very common in central and eastern European cuisine, where it is used in soups and stews.

 

Though root parsley looks similar to the parsnip, it tastes quite different. Parsnips are among the closest relatives of parsley in the family Apiaceae, but the similarity of the names is a coincidence, parsnip meaning “forked turnip”; it is not closely related to real turnips.

Cultivation:
Parsley grows best in moist, well drained soil, with full sun. It grows best between 22–30 °C, and is usually grown from seed. Germination is slow, taking four to six weeks, and often difficult because of furanocoumarins in its seed coatPlants grown for the leaf crop are typically spaced 10 cm apart, while those grown as a root crop are typically spaced 20 cm apart to allow for the root development.

Edible Uses:
Parsley is widely used in Middle Eastern, European, and American cooking. Curly leaf parsley is often used as a garnish. In central and eastern Europe and in western Asia, many dishes are served with fresh green chopped parsley sprinkled on top. Green parsley is often used as a garnish on potato dishes (boiled or mashed potatoes), on rice dishes (risotto or pilaf), on fish, fried chicken, lamb or goose, steaks, meat or vegetable stews (like beef bourguignon, goulash or chicken paprikash).

.

English: Mashed potatoes with a parsley leaf. ...

..

Escargot cooked with garlic and parsley butter...

In southern and central Europe, parsley is part of bouquet garni, a bundle of fresh herbs used as an ingredient in stocks, soups, and sauces. Freshly chopped green parsley is used as a topping for soups such as chicken soup, green salads or salads such as salade Olivier, and on open sandwiches with cold cuts or pâtés. Parsley is a key ingredient in several Middle Eastern salads such as tabbouleh. Persillade is a mixture of chopped garlic and chopped parsley used in French cuisine. Gremolata is a traditional accompaniment to the Italian veal stew, ossobuco alla milanese, a mixture of parsley, garlic, and lemon zest.

Root parsley is very common in central and eastern European cuisines, where it is used as a vegetable in many soups, stews and casseroles.

Medicinal Uses:
Chew the leaf raw to freshen the breath and promote healthy skin. Infuse for a digestive tonic.  Bruised leaves have been used to treat tumors, insect bites, lice and skin parasites and contusions.  Parsley tea at one time was used to treat dysentery and gallstones.  Other traditional uses reported include the treatment of diseases of the prostate, liver and spleen, in the treatment of anemia, arthritis and cancers, and as an expectorant, antimicrobial, aphrodisiac, hypotensive, laxative and as a scalp lotion to stimulate hair growth.   Use in a poultice as an antiseptic dressing for sprains, wounds and insect bites.  Decoct the root for kidney troubles and as a mild laxative.  Apply juice to reduce swellings.  It also stimulates appetite and increases blood flow to digestive organs, as well as reducing fever. Another constituent, the flavonoid apigenin, reduces inflammation by inhibiting histamine and is also a free-radical scavenger.   The seed, when decocted, has been used for intermittent fevers.  It has also traditionally used as a carminative to decrease flatulence and colic pain.  The seeds have a much stronger diuretic action than the leaves and may be substituted for celery seeds in the treatment of gout, rheumatism and arthritis.  It is often included in “slimming” teas because of its diuretic action.   Oil of the seed (5-15 drops) has been used to bring on menstruation.  Avoid if weak kidneys

Other Uses:
Parsley attracts some wildlife. Some swallowtail butterflies use parsley as a host plant for their larvae; their caterpillars are black and green striped with yellow dots, and will feed on parsley for two weeks before turning into butterflies. Bees and other nectar-feeding insects visit the flowers. Birds such as the goldfinch feed on the seeds.

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Photograph of caterpillar of the Black Swallow...

Photograph of caterpillar of the Black Swallowtail en ( Papilio polyxenes en ) on its Curly Parsley en ( Petroselinum crispum en ) host plant. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

You may click to learn more  uses of Parsley…..(1)l….(2)

Known Hazards:
Parsley should not be consumed in excess by pregnant women. It is safe in normal food quantities, but large amounts can have uterotonic effects.

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://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parsley
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_OPQ.htm

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Iris x germanica var. florentina

Botanical Name : Iris x germanica var. florentina
Family : Iridaceae
Subfamily: Iridoideae
Genus: Iris
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Asparagales
Tribe: Irideae
Subgenus: Iris
Section: Iris
Species: I. germanica

Synonyms :Iris florentina – L.

Common Name :Orris

Habitat :Iris germanica florentina  is native to Europe – Mediterranean. It probably grows in an albino form of I. germanica, it is not found in a truly wild situation

Description:
Iris germanica florentina is a perennial flowering plant, growing to 0.9m by 0.6m.The roots can go up to 10 cm deep. It is hardy to zone 5 and is not frost tender. It is in flower in May, and the seeds ripen from July to August. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects. The plant is self-fertile.

 

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The plant prefers light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils. 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:
Prefers a sunny position in a well-drained soil that contains some lime. Grows well in dry soils in light deciduous shade. Succeeds in full sun or partial shade. Prefers a pH in the range 6 to 7.5 or higher. The plant is sometimes cultivated for the essential oil in its root. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer or rabbits.

Propagation:
Seed – best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame. Stored seed should be sown as early in the year as possible in a cold frame. A sterile plant, it does not produce seed. Division, best done after flowering though it is usually successful at most times of the year. Very easy, larger clumps can be replanted direct into their permanent positions, though it is best to pot up smaller clumps and grow them on in a cold frame until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the spring.

Edible Uses
Edible Uses: Condiment.

The root can be dried, ground into a powder and used as a food flavouring[105]. The root may take several years of drying to develop its full fragrance.

Medicinal Uses:

Diuretic; Purgative; Stomachic.

The dried root is diuretic, expectorant and stomachic. It is taken internally in the treatment of coughs, catarrh and diarrhoea. Externally it is applied to deep wounds. The root is harvested in late summer and early autumn and dried for later use. The juice of the fresh root is a strong purge of great efficiency in the treatment of dropsy.
click & see…

English: Dried roots of Iris germanica (Orris ...

English: Dried roots of Iris germanica (Orris root), ready to be sold by the planter Walon: Souwêyès raecinêyes di cladjot d’ corti, presses a esse vindowe på cotlî (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Orris was formerly used in upper respiratory tract catarrh, coughs and for diarrhea in infants.  It was used to treat dropsy and has been used as a snuff for congestive headaches.  DRIED ROOT, preferably aged for at least 2 years. ½ to 1 teaspoon in warm water as suspended tea; the pressed “fingers” for teething infants to gum on.  Although sometimes a topical allergen, it is not so internally.

Other Uses:
Beads; Cosmetic; Dye; Essential; Ground cover; Incense.

The root is a source of Orris powder which has the scent of violets. It is obtained by grinding up the dried root. It is much used as a fixative in perfumery and pot-pourri, as an ingredient of toothpastes, breath fresheners etc and as a food flavouring. The root can take several years of drying to fully develop its violet-like fragrance, when fresh it has an acrid flavour and almost no smell. An essential oil is obtained from the fresh root, this has the same uses as the root. The root has been burnt in open fires in order to sweeten the smell of a room. The juice of the root is sometimes used as a cosmetic and also for the removal of freckles from the skin. A black dye is obtained from the root. A blue dye is obtained from the flowers. The seeds are used as rosary beads. Plants can be grown for ground cover, the dense mat of roots excluding all weeds.

Scented Plants:
Root: Dried
The dried root develops a delicious violet-like fragrance.

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?Iris+germanica+florentina
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iris_germanica
http://hortiplex.gardenweb.com/plants/jour/p/31/gw1021031/3197311017788975.jpeg
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_OPQ.htm

Atractylodes lancea

Botanical Name : Atractylodes lancea
Family: Asteraceae
Subfamily: Carduoideae
Tribe: Cynareae
Subtribe: Carlininae
Genus: Atractylodes
Especie: A. lancea
División: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Subclass: Asteridae
Order: Asterales

Synonyms:
*Atractylis lancea – Thunb.
*Atractylis ovata – Thunb.
*Atractylodes chinensis – (DC.)Koidz.
*Atractylodes ovata – (Thunb.)DC.
 
Common Name :Okera

Habitat ;Atractylis ovata is native to  E. Asia – Central China.  It grows in grassland, forests, thickets and rock crevices at elevations of 700 – 2500 metres.

Description:
Atractylis ovata is a herbeculus perennial plant growing to 1m.
It is hardy to zone 0. It is in flower from July to October, and the seeds ripen from August to October. 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)

click to see the pictures..>……(01)…...(1)……..(2).……..(3)..

English: Atractylodes lancea ???: ??????

English: Atractylodes lancea (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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:
We have very little information on this species and do not know if it will be hardy in Britain, though judging by its native range it could succeed outdoors in many parts of this country. This species is closely related to A. japonica. It is being investigated in China for the viability of growing it as a commercial crop. The following notes are based on the general needs of the genus. Succeeds in any well-drained soil in sun or partial shade. This species is dioecious. Both male and female plants need to be grown if seed is required.

Propagation:
Seed – sow spring in a cold frame and only just cover the seed. Prick out the seedlings when they are large enough to handle and plant them out into their permanent positions in the following spring or early summer.

Edible Uses:
Edible Parts: Root.

Root – raw or cooked. Exceedingly rich in vitamin A, it also contains 1.5% essential oils.

Medicinal Uses:
Antiemetic; Appetizer; Digestive; Diuretic; Expectorant; Stomachic; Tonic.

 

This plant is widely used in traditional Chinese medicine. The root is a bitter-sweet tonic herb that acts mainly upon the digestive system. The root is antibacterial, antiemetic, appetizer, digestive, diuretic, hypoglycaemic, sedative, stomachic and tonic. It is often used in conjunction with other herbs such as Codonopsis tangshen and Glycyrrhiza uralensis. It is used in the treatment of poor appetite, digestive disorders such as dyspepsia, abdominal distension and chronic diarrhoea, rheumatoid arthritis, oedema, spontaneous sweating and night blindness. The roots are harvested in the autumn and baked for use in tonics.

The roots are used to treat indigestion, skin problems, diarrhea, fever, stomach disorders, and night blindness

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?Atractylodes+lancea
http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atractylodes_lancea
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_OPQ.htm

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Solanum elaeagnifolium

Botanical Name : Solanum elaeagnifolium
Family: Solanaceae
Genus: Solanum
Species: S. elaeagnifolium
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Solanales

Common Name :Prairie Berry, Silverleaf Nettle, White Horsenettle or Silver Nightshade,Bull-nettle, “Horsenettle” and the Spanish “trompillo”, Silver-leaf bitter-apple or satansbos

Habitat : Solanum elaeagnifolium  is a common weed of western North America and also found in South America.Its range is from Kansas south to Louisiana, and west through the Mexican-border states of the United States into Mexico, as well as Uruguay, Argentina, and Chile. It may have originated in North America and was accidentally introduced to South America or the reverse. It can grow in poor soil with very little water. It spreads by rhizomes as well as seeds, and is common in disturbed habitats. It is considered a noxious weed in 21 U.S. states and in countries such as Australia, Egypt, Greece, India, Israel, Italy, South Africa, and Zimbabwe. It  grows in desert, Upland. This prickly weed is most common in highly disturbed areas like at the edge of fields and in overgrazed pastures, drainage ditches, and vacant lots.

Description:
Solanum elaeagnifolium is a perennial plant 10 cm to 1 m in height. The stems are covered with nettle-like prickles, ranging from very few on some plants to very dense on others. Leaves and stems are covered with downy hairs (trichomes) that lie against and hide the surface, giving a silvery or grayish appearance.

click to see the pictures......(01)....(1).…....(2)..…...(3)..……..(4).…..…….
The leaves are up to 15 cm long and 0.5 to 2.5 cm wide, with shallowly waved edges, which distinguish it from the closely related Carolina Horsenettle (S. carolinense), which has wider, more deeply indented leaves. The flowers, appearing from April to August, have five petals united to form a star, ranging from blue to pale lavender or occasionally white; five yellow stamens and a pistil form a projecting center. The plant produces glossy yellow, orange, or red berries that last all winter and may turn brown as they dry.

Medicinal Uses:
The weed is useful to  treat cutaneous diseases, syphilitic conditions, excites venereal functions, leprosy, teeter, eczema, scrofula, rheumatic and cachectic affections, ill-conditioned ulcers, glandular swellings, obstructed menstruation, and as a treatment of cancers. Tea is taken 1-2 cups is good for skin/hair diseases and worms. Bark in vodka is taken a few drops at a time for heart disease.
Externally 1 lb of bark is heated slowly in 1 lb of lard for 8 hours treats painful tumors, ulcers, irritated skin, piles, burns, scalds, etc..

Other Uses: The Pima Indians used the berries as a vegetable rennet, and the Kiowa used the seeds together with brain tissue to tan leather.Some gardeners encourage it as a xeriscape ornamental.

Known Hazards:
Poisonous – The plants, especially the leaves and green, unripe, cherry tomato-like fruit, are poisonous and contain the glycoalkaloid solanine as well as the tropane alkaloids scopolamine (hyoscine) and hyoscyamine

It is toxic to livestock and very hard to control, as root stocks less than 1 cm long can regenerate into 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://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solanum_elaeagnifolium
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_LMN.htm
http://www.fireflyforest.com/flowers/2369/solanum-elaeagnifolium-silverleaf-nightshade/

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Backhousia citriodora

Botanical Name :Backhousia citriodora
Family: Myrtaceae
Genus: Backhousia
Species: B. citriodora
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Myrtales

Common names : Lemon myrtle, Lemon scented myrtle, Lemon scented ironwood,Sweet verbena tree, Sweet verbena myrtle, Lemon scented verbena, and Lemon scented backhousia.

Habitat:Backhousia citriodora is native to  coastal rainforest areas of New South Wales and Queensland.

Description:
Backhousia citriodora is a medium-sized shrub or tree,It can reach 20 m (66 ft) in height, but is often smaller. The leaves are evergreen, opposite, lanceolate, 5–12 cm (2.0–4.7 in) long and 1.5–2.5 cm (0.59–0.98 in) broad, glossy green, with an entire margin. The flowers are creamy-white, 5–7 mm diameter, produced in clusters at the ends of the branches from summer through to autumn, after petal fall the calyx is persistent.

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Cultivation:
Backhousia citriodora is a cultivated ornamental plant. It can be grown from tropical to warm temperate climates, and may handle cooler districts provided it can be protected from frost when young. In cultivation it rarely exceeds about 5 metres (16 ft) and usually has a dense canopy. The principal attraction to gardeners is the lemon smell which perfumes both the leaves and flowers of the tree. Lemon myrtle is a hardy plant which tolerates all but the poorest drained soils. It can be slow growing but responds well to slow release fertilisers.

Seedling Backhousia citriodora go through a shrubby, slow juvenile growth stage, before developing a dominant trunk. Backhousia citriodora can also be propagated from cutting, but is slow to strike. Growing cuttings from mature trees bypasses the shrubby juvenile stage. Cutting propagation is also used to provide a consistent product in commercial production.

In plantation cultivation the tree is typically maintained as a shrub by regular harvesting from the top and sides. Mechanical harvesting is used in commercial plantations. It is important to retain some lower branches when pruning for plant health. The harvested leaves are dried for leaf spice, or distilled for the essential oil.

The majority of commercial lemon myrtle is grown in Queensland and the north coast of New South Wales, Australia.

Edible Uses;
Backhousia citriodora is one of the well known bushfood flavours and is sometimes referred to as the “Queen of the lemon herbs”. The leaf is often used as dried flakes, or in the form of an encapsulated flavour essence for enhanced shelf-life. It has a range of uses, such as lemon myrtle flakes in shortbread; flavouring in pasta; whole leaf with baked fish; infused in macadamia or vegetable oils; and made into tea, including tea blends. It can also be used as a lemon flavour replacement in milk-based foods, such as cheesecake, lemon flavoured ice-cream and sorbet without the curdling problem associated with lemon fruit acidity.

The dried leaf has free radical scavenging ability

Medicinal Uses;
AntimicrobialLemon myrtle essential oil possesses antimicrobial properties; however the undiluted essential oil is toxic to human cells in vitro. When diluted to approximately 1%, absorption through the skin and subsequent damage is thought to be minimal. Lemon myrtle oil has a high Rideal-Walker coefficient, a measure of antimicrobial potency. Use of lemon myrtle oil as a treatment for skin lesions caused by molluscum contagiosum virus (MCV), a disease affecting children and immuno-compromised patients, has been investigated. Nine of sixteen patients who were treated with 10% strength lemon myrtle oil showed a significant improvement, compared to none in the control group. The oil is a popular ingredient in health care and cleaning products, especially soaps, lotions and shampoos.

Made as a tea for coughs, colds and other respiratory ailments, sinus and stress. Lemon myrtle tea is used for free blood flow and to make the blood less sticky.  Singers have also told us lemon myrtle tea is a good tonic for their throats.

Other Uses:
Essential oils
B.citriodora has two essential oil chemotypes:

The citral chemotype is more prevalent and is cultivated in Australia for flavouring and essential oil. Citral as an isolate in steam distilled lemon myrtle oil is typically 90–98%, and oil yield 1–3% from fresh leaf. It is the highest natural source of citral.
The citronellal chemotype is uncommon, and can be used as an insect repellent

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://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Backhousia_citriodora
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/gnp14/backhousia-citriodora.html
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_LMN.htm
http://www.bullockcreeknursery.com.au/lemon-myrtle.htm

Erysimum cheiranthoides

Botanical Name : Erysimum cheiranthoides
Family: Brassicaceae
Genus: Erysimum
Species: E. cheiranthoides
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Brassicales

Common Name:Treacle-mustard, Wormseed Mustard

Habitat :Erysimum cheiranthoides is   native to most of central and northern Europe and northern and central Asia.It is widely naturalised outside of its native range, including in western and southern Europe, and North America . Found in many habitats from southern British Columbia to California at elevations of 750 – 3600 metres.

Description:
Erysimum cheiranthoides is a herbaceous annual plant similar in appearance to many other mustards, growing an erect stem 15–100 cm (rarely 150 cm) tall. The leaves are lanceolate to elliptic, 2–11 cm long and 0.5–1 cm broad, with an entire to coarsely toothed margin. The flowers are bright yellow, 5–12 mm diameter, produced in an erect inflorescence. It is in flower from Jul to August. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects The fruit is a slender cylindrical capsule 1–3 cm (rarely 5 cm) long, containing several small, dark brown seeds.
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It is hardy to zone 5 and is not frost tender.

Cultivation :  
Requires a well-drained soil and a sunny position. Dislikes acid soils. Tolerates poor soils.

Propagation:  
Seed – sow in situ in the spring. Germination should take place within 3 weeks.

Medicinal Uses
Skin;  Vermifuge.
A drink made from the crushed seed is used as a vermifuge. It is intensely bitter but has been used on children and expels the worms both by vomit and by excretion. A decoction of the root has been applied to skin eruptions. Occasionally used as an anthelmintic.  It is also used in folk medicine to treat rhueumatism, jaundice, dropsy and asthma. The root mixed in water was applied to skin eruptions

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://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Erysimum+cheiranthoides
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erysimum_cheiranthoides
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_LMN.htm

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Sisymbrium altissimum

Botanical Name :Sisymbrium altissimum
Family: Brassicaceae
Genus: Sisymbrium
Species: S. altissimum
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Brassicales

Synonyms:  S. pannonicum. S. sinapistrum.

Common Name :Jim Hill mustard, after James J. Hill, a Canadian-American railroad magnate, Tall mustard, Tumble mustard, tumbleweed mustard, tall sisymbrium, and tall hedge mustard.

Habitat :Sisymbrium altissimum is native to the western part of the Mediterranean Basin in Europe and Northern Africa and is widely naturalized throughout most of the world, including all of North America. It was probably introduced into North America by a contaminant crop seed. The plant grows in soils of all textures, even sand.

Description:
Sisymbrium altissimum is an annual herb L growing to 1 m (3ft 3in). Stems is erect, branched distally, (2-)4-12(-16) dm, sparsely to densely hirsute basally, glabrous or glabrate distally. Basal leaves rosulate; petiole 1-10(-15) cm; blade broadly oblanceolate, oblong, or lanceolate (in outline), (2-)5-20(-35) cm × (10-)20-80(-100) mm, margins pinnatisect, pinnatifid, or runcinate; lobes (3-)4-6(-8) on each side, oblong or lanceolate, smaller than terminal lobe, margins entire, dentate, or lobed. Cauline leaves similar to basal; distalmost blade with linear to filiform lobes. Fruiting pedicels usually divaricate, rarely ascending, stout, nearly as wide as fruit, (4-)6-10(-13) mm. Flowers: sepals ascending or spreading, oblong, (cucullate), 4-6 × 1-2 mm; petals spatulate, (5-)6-8(-10) × 2.5-4 mm, claw 3.5-6 mm; filaments 2-6 mm; anthers oblong, 1.5-2.2 mm.

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The plant germinates in winter or early spring. The blooming time is lengthy, and after maturity the plant forms a tumbleweed.

It is not frost tender. It is in flower from Jun to August, and the seeds ripen from Jul to September. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects. Fruits narrowly linear, usually straight, smooth, stout.

Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers dry or moist soil.

Cultivation:
Succeeds in most soils.

Propagation:
Seed – sow spring or autumn in situ.

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

Young leaves and shoots – raw or cooked. A somewhat hot flavour, they can be used as a flavouring in salads or cooked as a potherb. Seed – ground into a powder and used as a gruel or as a mustard-like flavouring in soups etc.

Medicinal Uses:

Antiscorbutic;  Astringent.

The leaves and flowers are antiscorbutic and astringent.The leaves and flowers have medicinal properties that has been used to cause tissue to contract. They also contain an agent that is effective against scurvy.

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://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sisymbrium_altissimum
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Sisymbrium+altissimum
http://swbiodiversity.org/seinet/taxa/index.php?taxon=1151
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_LMN.htm

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