Tag Archives: Alcea

Prunus cerasus austera

Botanical Name : Prunus cerasus austera
Family: Rosaceae
Genus: Prunus
Subgenus: Cerasus
Species: P. cerasus
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Rosales

Common Name : Morello Cherry

Habitat : Prunus cerasus austera is native to S.E. Europe to W. Asia. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil. The plant can tolerate maritime exposure.

Description:
Prunus cerasus austera is a deciduous Tree growing to 9 m (29ft 6in).It is in flower in May, and the seeds ripen in July. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees.The plant is self-fertile.

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Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very acid soils.
Cultivation:
Thrives in a well-drained moisture-retentive loamy soil. Prefers some lime in the soil but is likely to become chlorotic if too much lime is present. Prefers an acid soil according to another report. Succeeds in sun or partial shade though it fruits better in a sunny position. Plants succeed when grown against a north-facing wall, the fruit ripens later in this position thus extending the season. Hardy to about -20°c. This subspecies covers the cultivated bitter cherries known as Morello cherries. They have been long cultivated for their edible fruit and there are several named varieties. Most members of this genus are shallow-rooted and will produce suckers if the roots are damaged. Plants produce suckers freely. Plants in this genus are notably susceptible to honey fungus.
Propagation:
Seed – requires 2 – 3 months cold stratification and is best sown in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe. Sow stored seed in a cold frame as early in the year as possible. Protect the seed from mice etc. The seed can be rather slow, sometimes taking 18 months to germinate. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle. Grow them on in a greenhouse or cold frame for their first winter and plant them out in late spring or early summer of the following year. Cuttings of half-ripe wood with a heel, July/August in a frame. Softwood cuttings from strongly growing plants in spring to early summer in a frame. Layering in spring. Division of suckers during the dormant season. They can be planted out direct into their permanent positions.

Edible Uses:
Edible Parts: Fruit; Oil; Oil; Seed.
Fruit – raw or cooked. The fruit is neither bitter nor sweet, but is pleasantly acid and it can be eaten out of hand, used in pies, preserves etc or dried for later use. The fruit has a dark juice. The fruit is about 18mm in diameter and contains one large seed. Seed – raw or cooked. Do not eat the seed if it is too bitter – see the notes  below on toxicity. An edible oil is obtained from the seed. When refined it is used as a salad oil[183]. The leaves are used as a tea substitute. A gum obtained from the trunk is used for chewing.

Medicinal Uses:
Although no specific mention has been seen for this species, all members of the genus contain amygdalin and prunasin, substances which break down in water to form hydrocyanic acid (cyanide or prussic acid). In small amounts this exceedingly poisonous compound stimulates respiration, improves digestion and gives a sense of well-being.
Other Uses:
Adhesive; Dye; Gum; Gum; Hedge; Hedge; Oil; Oil; Wood.

An edible drying oil obtained from the seed is also used in cosmetics. The gum obtained from the stem is also used as an adhesive. Plants can be grown as a hedge, succeeding in fairly exposed positions. A green dye can be obtained from the leaves. A dark grey to green dye can be obtained from the fruit.
Known Hazards: Although no specific mention has been seen for this species, it belongs to a genus where most, if not all members of the genus produce hydrogen cyanide, a poison that gives almonds their characteristic flavour. This toxin is found mainly in the leaves and seed and is readily detected by its bitter taste. It is usually present in too small a quantity to do any harm but any very bitter seed or fruit should not be eaten. In small quantities, hydrogen cyanide has been shown to stimulate respiration and improve digestion, it is also claimed to be of benefit in the treatment of cancer. In excess, however, it can cause respiratory failure and even death.
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.
Respouces:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prunus_cerasus
http://www.pfaf.org/User/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Prunus+cerasus+austera

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Jin Qian Cao

Botanical Name: Lysimachia christiniae
Family: Primulaceae
Genus: Lysimachia
Species: L. vulgaris
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Ericales

Common Name: Jin Qian Cao

Habitat: Jin Qian Cao is native to E. AsiaChina. It grows in grassy thickets along roadsides. Damp areas along streamsides, open forests and forest margins at elevations of 500 – 2300 metres.

Description:
Jin Qian Cao is a perennial herb growing to 0.3 m (1ft) by 0.5 m (1ft 8in). It is in flower from May to July. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.The plant is self-fertile…CLICK & SEE  THE PICTURES

Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and can grow in heavy clay soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil.
Cultivation:
We have very little information on this species and do not know if it will be hardy in Britain. The following notes are based on the general needs of the genus. An easily grown plant, succeeding in a moist loamy soil[1]. Grows well in heavy clay soils. Most species in this genus seem to be immune to the predations of rabbits.

Propagation:
Seed – sow autumn in a cold frame. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in the summer. Division in spring or autumn. 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.
Medicinal Uses:
The whole plant is antiphlogistic, cholagogue, depurative, diuretic, febrifuge and lithontripic. A decoction is used in the treatment of abscesses, burns, bites, kidney stones, gallbladder stones, inflammation etc.   It is also used to treat mushroom poisoning and drug poisoning
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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=Lysimachia+christiniae
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jin_Qian_Cao

Asarum maximum

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Botanical Name: Asarum maximum
Family: Aristolochiaceae
Genus: Asarum
Species: A. maximum
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Piperales

Common Name : Ling Ling Panda Face Ginger

Habitat :Asarum maximum is native to E. Asia – China in Hubei and E. Sichuan. It grows in the forests in humus rich soils at elevations of 600 – 800 metres.

Description:
Asarum maximum is a perennial herb growing to 0.5 m (1ft 8in).
This clumping species from China has large, 6″, glossy, rounded arrowhead-shaped, green leaves. It is certainly best-known for its stunning flowers (often the subject of fine paintings). It is in flower from May to June. The 2″ flower is velvet-black outside with a stunning white interior. This easy-to-grow species really responds well to rich humus-laden soils and high fertility. A well-grown 10″ tall x 18″ wide clump of Asarum maximum ‘Green Panda’ is simply stunning as well as deer-resistant .

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The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Flies.Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in full shade (deep woodland) or semi-shade (light woodland). It prefers moist soil.

Cultivation:
Prefers a rich moist neutral to acid soil in woodland or a shady position in the rock garden[1, 200]. Plants are hardy to at least -15°c. The flowers are malodorous and are pollinated by flies. Plants often self-sow when growing in a suitable position.

Propagation:
Seed – best sown in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe in the summer. Stored seed will require 3 weeks cold stratification and should be sown in late winter. The seed usually germinates in the spring in 1 – 4 or more weeks at 18°c. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in light shade in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out when large enough in late spring. Division in spring or autumn. Plants are slow to increase. It is best to pot the divisions up and keep them in light shade in the greenhouse until they are growing away strongly.

Medicinal Uses:
The dried plant is used medicinally in Vietnam. The leaves ate used in the treatment of dyspepsia and colic whilst the flowers and roots are used as a reconstituent. Analgesic, expectorant. Used as a gargle for sore throats etc
Known Hazards: Although no reports of toxicity have been found for this plant, at least 3 other members of this genus have reports that the leaves are toxic. Some caution is therefore advised in the use of this plant.

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:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asarum_maximum
http://pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Asarum+maximum
Asarum maximum Ling Ling

Rudbechia hirta

 

Botanical Name: Rudbechia hirta
Family: Asteraceae
Genus: Rudbeckia
Species: R. hirta
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Asterales

Common Names: Black-Eye-Susan, Brown-eyed susan, Brown betty, Gloriosa daisy, Golden Jerusalem, Poorland daisy, Yellow daisy, and Yellow ox-eye daisy
Habitat: Rudbechia hirta native to the Eastern and Central North America and naturalized in the Western part of the continent as well as in China. It has now been found in all 10 Canadian Provinces and all 48 of the states in the contiguous United States.

Description:
Rudbeckia hirta is an upright annual (sometimes biennial or perennial) growing 30–100 cm (12–39 in) tall by 30–45 cm (12–18 in) wide. It has alternate, mostly basal leaves 10–18 cm long, covered by coarse hair, with stout branching stems and daisy-like, composite flower heads appearing in late summer and early autumn. In the species, the flowers are up to 10 cm (4 in) in diameter, with yellow ray florets circling conspicuous brown or black, dome-shaped cone of many small disc florets. However, extensive breeding has produced a range of sizes and colours, including oranges, reds and browns
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Varieties:
There are four varieties

*Rudbeckia hirta var. angustifolia – southeastern + south-central United States (South Carolina to Texas)
*Rudbeckia hirta var. floridana – Florida
*Rudbeckia hirta var. hirta – Eastern United States (Maine to Alabama).
*Rudbeckia hirta var. pulcherrima. Widespread in most of North America (Newfoundland to British Columbia, south to Alabama and New Mexico; naturalized Washington to California).

Cultivation:
Rudbeckia hirta is widely cultivated in parks and gardens, for summer bedding schemes, borders, containers, wildflower gardens, prairie-style plantings and cut flowers. Numerous cultivars have been developed, of which ‘Indian Summer’ and ‘Toto’ have gained the Royal Horticultural Society‘s Award of Garden Merit. Other popular cultivars include ‘Double Gold’ and ‘Marmalade’.

Gloriosa daisies are tetraploid cultivars having much larger flower heads than the wild species, often doubled or with contrasting markings on the ray florets. They were first bred by Alfred Blakeslee of Smith College by applying colchicine to R. hirta seeds; Blakeslee’s stock was further developed by W. Atlee Burpee and introduced to commerce at the 1957 Philadelphia Flower Show. Gloriosa daisies are generally treated as annuals or short-lived perennials and are typically grown from seed, though there are some named cultivars.

Medicinal Uses:
Certain parts of the plant contains anthocyanins a class of antioxidant with several known health benefits.

Traditional Native American medicinal uses:
American Indians used root tea to treat parasitic infestations such as pinworm. They used it externally to treat snake bits, superficial wounds and earaches.

*The roots but not the seedheads of Rudbeckia hirta can be used much like the related Echinacea purpurea to boost immunity and fight colds, flu and infections.
*It is also an astringent when used in a warm infusion as a wash for sores and swellings.
*The Ojibwa people used it as a poultice for snake bites and to make an infusion for treating colds and worms in children.
*The plant is also diuretic and was used by the Menominee and Potawatomi peoples.
*Juice from the roots has been used as drops for earaches

Other Uses:
*Butterflies are attracted to Rudbeckia hirta when planted in large color-masses, creating a beautiful spectacle.
* The black-eyed Susan which also traditionally symbolizes “Justice” makes a very nice cut-flower with a vase life up to 10 days

Known Hazards: The species is known to be toxic to cats when ingeste
As with any wild plant, it is usually recommended to research carefully before consuming as not all parts of the plant may be edible and to avoid mis-identification with other plants that may look similar to the Black eyed Susan.
It is widely recommended always to consul

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:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rudbeckia_hirta
http://www.piam.com/mms_garden/plants.html

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Hollyhocks (Alcea Roses)

Botanical Name: Alcea rosea
Family: Malvaceae
Genus: Alcea
Kingdom: Plantae
Order:     Malvales

The scientific name for Hollyhocks is Alcea rosea but used to go by the scientific name Althaea and is still seen that way in garden catalogs on occasion.

Common Name:Hollyhocks

Habitats: Holyhock is native to Eurasia.It grows in Woodland Garden; Sunny Edge; Dappled Shade; and in  Cultivated Beds.Hollyhocks prefer rich, well-drained soil and full sun. Light shade is tolerated but wet winter soil is not….click & see

Description:
Holyhock  is a biennial or short-lived perennial plant about 4-8′ tall. The stout central stem is unbranched or sparingly branched; it is light green, terete, and more or less hairy. The blades of the alternate leaves are up to 8″ long and across; they are palmately lobed (with 3-7 blunt lobes each) and crenate along their margins. Each leaf blade is orbicular or oval in outline and indented at the base where the petiole joins the blade. The upper surface of each leaf blade is medium green, slightly pubescent to hairless, and wrinkled from fine veins; the lower surface is light green and pubescent. The petioles of the leaves are as long or a little longer than their blades; they are light green and hairy..
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The central stem terminates in a spike-like raceme of flowers; axillary flowers are produced from the axils of the upper leaves as well. These flowers occur individually or in small clusters along the central stem; they nod sideways from short hairy pedicels. Each flower spans about 3-5″ when it is fully open; it has 5 petals, 5 sepals, 6-9 sepal-like bracts, and a columnar structure in the center with the reproductive organs (stamens toward the tip, thread-like stigmas below). The overlapping petals provide the flower with a funnelform shape; they are usually some shade of white, pink, or purplish red. The sepals are light green, ovate, and much smaller than the petals. The bracts of each flower are located underneath the sepals; they are light green, hairy, ovate, and joined together at the base. The blooming period occurs from mid-summer into the fall; a colony of plants will bloom for about 2 months. Each flower is replaced by a fruit containing a ring of 15-20 seeds (technically, a schizocarp). These seeds are oval, flattened, and notched on one side. The root system consists of a taproot. This plant spreads by reseeding itself.

Species: There are about 60 species of Alcea, including:

Alcea acaulis
Alcea biennis (syn. A. pallida)
Alcea calvertii
Alcea ficifolia — Antwerp hollyhock
Alcea flavovirens
Alcea grossheimii — Grossheim’s alcea
Alcea heldreichii
Alcea kurdica
Alcea lavateriflora
Alcea litwinowii
Alcea longipedicellata
Alcea nudiflora
Alcea pallida
Alcea rhyticarpa
Alcea rosea — common hollyhock
Alcea rugosa
Alcea setosa — bristly hollyhock
Alcea sosnovskyi
Alcea striata
Alcea sulphurea

Hardiness Zones: Hollyhocks are hardy in zones 2-10.

Uses in the Garden: Perfect for planting in the back of borders, for old cottage gardens, cut flower gardens, humming bird beds or fence borders.

Cultivation details:
Succeeds in most soils. Poor soils should be enriched with organic matter. Prefers a heavy rich soil and a sheltered sunny position.Plants are hardy to about -15°c.A very ornamental plant, it is usually grown as a biennial due to its susceptibility to the fungal disease ‘rust’. There are many named varieties.Young plants, and also the young growth in spring, are very attractive to slugs. The preference is full to partial sun, moist to mesic conditions, and a fertile loamy soil. Lower leaves will wither away during hot dry weather. Hollyhock is vulnerable to foliar disease, including rust.

Propagation:
Seed – sow April/May or August/September in pots or in situ[200, 238]. Easily grown from seed, which usually germinates in about 2 – 3 weeks at 20°c[133, 268]. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in the summer.Division after flowering. Only use rust-free specimens.Root cuttings in December.Basal cuttings at almost any time of year

Medicinal Uses:
Antiinflammatory; Astringent; Demulcent; Diuretic; Emollient; Febrifuge.

Hollyhock is stated to be an emollient and laxative. It is used to control inflammation, to stop bed-wetting and as a mouthwash in cases of bleeding gums .

The flowers are demulcent, diuretic and emollient. They are useful in the treatment of chest complaints, and a decoction is used to improve blood circulation, for the treatment of constipation, dysmenorrhoea, haemorrhage etc. The flowers are harvested when they are open and are dried for later use.
The shoots are used to ease a difficult labour. The root is astringent and demulcent. It is crushed and applied as a poultice to ulcers. Internally, it is used in the treatment of dysentery. The roots and the flowers are used in Tibetan medicine, where they are said to have a sweet, acrid taste and a neutral potency. They are used in the treatment of inflammations of the kidneys/womb, vaginal/seminal discharge, and the roots on their own are used to treat loss of appetite.
The seed is demulcent, diuretic and febrifuge.The flowers are used in the treatment of repiratory and inflammatory ailments and the root extracts to produce marshmallow sweets.

Other Uses
Compost; Dye; Litmus; Oil; Paper.
A fibre obtained from the stems is used in papermaking. The fibres are about 1.9mm long. The stems are harvested in late summer, the leaves are removed and the stems are steamed until the fibres can be removed. The fibres are cooked with lye for 2 hours and then ball milled for 3 hours or pounded with mallets. The paper is light tan in colour.

The flowers are an alternative ingredient of ‘Quick Return’ herbal compost activator. This is a dried and powdered mixture of several herbs that can be added to a compost heap in order to speed up bacterial activity and thus shorten the time needed to make the compost.The seed contains 12% of a drying oil.The red anthocyanin constituent of the flowers is used as a litmus.A brown dye is obtained from the petals.
Hollyhocks are tolerant of black walnut toxins and, like Polemonium plants, can be planted near and around black walnut trees where other plants will not grow.

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.ibiblio.org/pfaf/cgi-bin/arr_html?Alcea+rosea
http://plantsbulbs.suite101.com/article.cfm/hollyhock_alcea_plant_profile
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alcea
http://www.illinoiswildflowers.info/weeds/plants/hollyhock.htm