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Iris kemaonensis


Btanical Name :  Iris kemaonensis
Family: Iridaceae
Subfamily: Iridoideae
Tribe: Irideae
Genus: Iris
Subgenus: Iris
Section: Pseudoregelia
Species: Iris kemaonensis
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Asparagales

Synonyms:
*Iris duthiei Foster
*Iris kamaonensis Wall.
*Iris kingiana Foster
*Iris tigrina Jacquem. ex Baker

Common Name: Kumaon iris

Habitat : Iris kemaonensis is native to East Asia – Himalayas from India to Bhutan and western China. It grows on alpine pastures at elevations of 3500 – 4200 metres.
Description:
Iris kemaonensis is a perennial flowering plant, growing to 0.5 m (1ft 8in) by 0.5 m (1ft 8in). The leaves are variable in size, they can grow up to between 6–20 cm (2–8 in) long, and between 0.2 and 1 cm wide, at blooming time. Before the plant produces fruit or seed capsules, they extend up to between 34–45 cm (13–18 in) long, taller than the flowers. They are light green, greyish green or yellowish green. They are glaucous, and linear, with a rounded apex. In mild areas, it is semi-evergreen, but generally they are deciduous.
It has a slender short stem, that can grow up to between 5–12 cm (2–5 in) tall.
The stem has 2 to 3 green, lanceolate, (scarious) membranous, spathes (leaves of the flower bud). They can be between 5–6 cm (2–2 in) long and between 1 and 1.8 cm wide. They are scarious (membranous) and acuminate (pointed) at the tips. They can sheath or cover the base of the stem.
It is in flower from May to June. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.The plant is self-fertile.
The stems hold 1 or 2 terminal (top of stem) flowers, which bloom in late spring, between May and June, (in UK and Europe) and between April and July, (in India).

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The scented flowers, are 4–8 cm (2–3 in) in diameter, they come in shades of purple, from lilac, to lilac-purple, to pale purple. The flowers are spotted, or blotched with a dark colour. They are mottled like the skin of a reptile. The flowers are very similar in form to Iris hookeriana, but similar in shade to Iris kashmiriana.
It has 2 pairs of petals, 3 large sepals (outer petals), known as the ‘falls’ and 3 inner, smaller petals (or tepals), known as the ‘standards’.[17] The falls are spatulate (spoon shaped), or obovate, between 3.5–5 cm (1–2 in) long and 1.5 cm wide. They have ovate blades.[3][16] In the centre of the petal is a dense beard of white hairs, with yellow, or orange tips. The upright standards are oblanceolate, elliptic,[8] or obovate shaped, are between 4–5 cm (2–2 in) long and 1 cm wide. The standards are paler than the falls.

It has pedicels that are between 1 and 1.5 cm long trumpet shaped perianth tube that 5–7.5 cm (2–3 in) long, which is longer than spathe.[8] It has 2.5-3.2 cm long and 5-6mm wide, style branches, it is dark in the centre and paler at the edges. It has small triangular crests.[3] It has 2-2.3 cm long stamens, 6 cm long ovary, blue filaments, lavender anthers and white pollen.

After the iris has flowered, it produces an globose seed capsule, that is 2–2.5 cm (1–1 in) long, and 1.5 – 1.8 cm wide. They have short beak, taper to a pointed apex and dehisce (split open) laterally. Inside the capsule, are pyriform seeds, which are reddish brown, which have a milky yellow or cream aril (appendage). The seed capsule grows on stems, that are about 45 cm long, above the height of the leaves. This habit is similar to Algerian Iris (Iris unguicularis).
Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very alkaline soils.
It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought.
Cultivation:
Requires a sunny position and a well-drained soil containing lime. Prefers a pH between 6 and 7.5 or higher. The rhizome is compact and non-stoloniferous. Closely related to Iris dolichosiphon. 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. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and grow them on in the greenhouse or cold frame for their first year. Plant out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer. Division, best done after flowering, though it can be done at almost any time. 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.

Medicinal Uses:
The flowers of Iris kemaonensis are used in Tibetan herbal medicine. They are described as having an acrid taste. They are analgesic and ophthalmic, and are used in the treatment of tinnitus (pain in the ears) and to treat weakening of the eyesight.

The seeds of the iris are also used in herbal medicine in Tibet, they also have an acrid taste, are analgesic and are anthelmintic and vermifuge. They are used in the treatment of colic pains, when due to intestinal worms. They are also used to treat hot and cold disorders of the stomach and intestines, and also the pain, below the neck and shoulders.

The roots and the whole of the iris is a stomachic, which can be used on scabies and urticaria.  The roots and leaves of the plant are diuretic, and used to treat bronchitis, dropsy and various liver complaints. When broken down into a powder, they are used to treat sores and pimples. The roots of the plant, are used to treat urinary disorders and kidney troubles. The seeds are used to treat coughs and colds.  In India, they are also used as spasmolytic, febrifuge and antidote for opium addiction.
Known Hazards: Many plants in this genus are thought to be poisonous if ingested, so caution is advised[65]. The roots are especially likely to be toxic. Plants can cause skin irritations and allergies in some people.
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/Iris_kemaonensis
http://www.pfaf.org/User/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Iris+kemaonensis

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Prunus americana lanata

 

Botanical Name: Prunus americana lanata
Family: Rosaceae
Genus: Prunus
Subgenus:Prunus
Section: Prunocerasus
Species: P. americana
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Rosales

Synonyms: Prunus lanata. (Sudw.)Mack.&Bush.

Habitat : Prunus americana lanata is native to Central and Southern N. America – Indiana to Illinois, south to Texas. It grows on the hillsides and river bottom lands.

Description:
Prunus americana lanata is a deciduous Tree growing to 10 m (32ft 10in). The leaves are somewhat stout with pubescent, usually glandless petioles; twigs often become somewhat spinelike at the tips. White flowers usually appear before the leaves and are borne in fasicles of two to five on the tip of spur branchlets or from axillary buds formed the previous season. Fruits are yellow to red plums (drupes), at least 0.8 inch (2 cm) long with yellow flesh and a compressed stone. Although this species sometimes produces small, hard plums, the fruits are generally fleshy and highly palatable. Occassionally trees cultivated for plums escape and persist. Horticultural varieties can be distinguished from the native species by their larger petals, smaller flower clusters (one to three per node), and sometimes by the gland-tipped teeth of the leaves.

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It is in flower in April, and the seeds ripen in August. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.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 semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil.

Cultivation;
Thrives in a well-drained moisture-retentive loamy soil, doing well on limestone. Prefers some lime in the soil but is likely to become chlorotic if too much lime is present. Succeeds in sun or partial shade though it fruits better in a sunny position. Most members of this genus are shallow-rooted and will produce suckers if the roots are damaged. 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.

Edible Uses:
Edible Parts: Fruit; Seed.

Fruit – raw or cooked. Used mainly in jellies. The fruit is about 25mm in diameter, it has a thick succulent flesh and contains one large seed. Seed – raw or cooked. Do not eat the seed if it is too bitter – see the notes above on toxicity.

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:
Dye; Wood.

A green dye can be obtained from the leaves. A dark grey to green dye can be obtained from the fruit. Wood – heavy, hard, close-grained, strong. The tree is too small for the wood to be of commercial value.

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 : 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=Prunus+americana+lanata
http://www.cirrusimage.com/tree_American_plum.htm
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prunus_americana

Amorphophallus rivieri

Botanical Name: Amorphophallus rivieri
Family: Araceae
Subfamily: Aroideaen f
Tribe: Thomsonieae
Genus: Amorphophallus
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Alismatales

Synonyms : Conophallus konjak.

Common Names: Devil’s Tongue, Umbrella Arum, Leopard Palm, Snake Palm

Habitat: Amorphophallus rivieri is native to E. Asia – Cochin China, East Indies. Loose leafy detritus in moist shady habitats. It grows in forest margins and thickets at elevations of 830-1200 metres in western Yunnan.

Description:
Amorphophallus rivieri is a tuberous herbaceous perennial plant growing to 0.8 m (2ft 7in) by 0.6 m (2ft). It is foul-smelling somewhat fleshy tropical plant of southeastern Asia cultivated for its edible corms or in the greenhouse for its large leaves and showy dark red spathe surrounding a large spadix.

It is frost tender. The flowers are monoecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but both sexes can be found on the same plant) and are pollinated by Flies.

Bloom Color: Pink. Main Bloom Time: Late spring. Form: Irregular or sprawling.

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

Cultivation:
Landscape Uses:Border, Container. Requires shade and a rich soil in its native habitats, but it probably requires a position with at least moderate sun in Britain. This species is being increasingly cultivated for its edible tubers in Japan and Chin The plants are not winter hardy outdoors in Britain but are sometimes grown outdoors in this country as part of a sub-tropical bedding display. It is also said to make a good house plant. The tuber is harvested in the autumn after top growth has been cut back by frost and it must be kept quite dry and frost-free over winter. It is then potted up in a warm greenhouse in spring ready to be planted out after the last expected frosts. The tubers are planted 15cm deep. The plant has one enormous leaf and one spadix annually. It requires hand pollination in Britain. When ripe for pollination, the flowers have a foetid smell to attract carrion flies and midges. This smell disappears once the flower has been pollinated. Special Features:Attractive foliage, Edible, Fragrant flowers, Flowers have an unpleasant odor.

Propagation:
Seed – best sown in a pot in a warm greenhouse as soon as it is ripe and the pot sealed in a plastic bag to retain moisture. It usually germinates in 1 – 8 months at 24°c. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least a couple of years. Plant them out in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts, and give them some protection such as a cloche until they are growing away strongly. Division of offsets. These are rarely produced

Edible Uses:
Rhizome – cooked. The root must be thoroughly boiled or baked, it is acrid when raw. Very large, it can be up to 30cm in iameter. In Japan the large brown tubers are peeled, cooked and pounded to extract their starch, which is solidified with dissolved limestone into an edible gel called ‘Konnyaku’. Konnyaku is a type of flour valued for its use in many dietary products. The flour is valued for its ability to clean the digestive tract without being a laxative. A nutritional analysis is available. This root is very high in water and low in calories, so it is being promoted as a diet food in N. America.

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

•308 Calories per 100g
•Water : 0%
•Protein: 3.8g; Fat: 0g; Carbohydrate: 88.5g; Fibre: 3.8g; Ash: 7.7g;
•Minerals – Calcium: 654mg; Phosphorus: 269mg; Iron: 11.5mg; Magnesium: 0mg; Sodium: 0mg; Potassium: 0mg; Zinc: 0mg;
•Vitamins – A: 0mg; Thiamine (B1): 0mg; Riboflavin (B2): 0mg; Niacin: 0mg; B6: 0mg; C: 0mg;

Medicinal Uses: The root is oxytoxic and sialagogue. It is used in the treatment of cancer. The flowers are febrifuge.

Other Uses : The plant has insecticidal properties.

Known Hazards: We have one report that this plant is very toxic raw, though no more details are given. It belongs to a family where most of the members contain calcium oxalate crystals. This substance is toxic fresh and, if eaten, makes the mouth, tongue and throat feel as if hundreds of small needles are digging in to them. However, calcium oxalate is easily broken down either by thoroughly cooking the plant or by fully drying it and, in either of these states, it is safe to eat the plant. People with a tendency to rheumatism, arthritis, gout, kidney stones and hyperacidity should take especial caution if including this plant in their diet.

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=Amorphophallus+rivieri
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amorphophallus

http://www.thefreedictionary.com/Amorphophallus+rivieri

 

Mangifera indica (Mango Tree)

Botanical Name: Mangifera indica
Family: Anacardiaceae
Genus: Mangifera
Species: M. indica
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Sapindales

Common Name: Mango

Habitat : Mangifera indica is native to India, Pakisthan, Babgladesh. It is now grown in many tropical countries of the world. The species appears to have been domesticated in India at around 2000 BC. The species was brought to East Asia around 400-500 BCE from India; next, in the 15th century to the Philippines; and then, in the 16th century to Africa and Brazil by the Portuguese. The species was described for science by Linnaeus in 1753.

Description:
Mangifera indica is a large evergreen tree, with a heavy, dome-shaped crown. The mango is the most popular fruit in India. It is capable of a growing to a height and crown width of about 100 feet and trunk circumference of more than twelve feet.

The unripe, fully developed mangoes of pickling varieties contain citric, malic, oxalic, succinic and two unidentified acids. The ripe fruits constitute a rich source of vitamin A; some varieties contain fairly good amounts of vitamin C also. ß-Carotene and xanthophyll are the principal pigments in ripe mango. The leaves contain the glucoside mangiferine. The bark of the mango tree contains tannin (16-20%). Mangiferine has been isolated from the bark.

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Mango is the National fruit of India, Pakistan and the Philippines. The Mango tree is the national tree of Bangladesh. It finds mention in the songs of 4th century CE Sanskrit poet Kalidasa. Prior to that, it is believed to have been tasted by Alexander (4th century BCE) and Chinese pilgrim Hieun Tsang (7th century CE). Later in 16th century Mughal Emperor, Akbar planted 100,000 mango trees in Darbhanga, Bihar at a place now known as Lakhi Bagh.
Chemical Constituents:
Mangiferin (a pharmacologically active hydroxylated xanthone C-glycoside) is extracted from mango at high concentrations from the young leaves (172 g/kg), bark (107 g/kg), and from old leaves (94 g/kg). Allergenic urushiols are present in the fruit peel and can trigger contact dermatitis in sensitised individuals. This reaction is more likely to occur in people who have been exposed to other plants from the Anacardiaceae family, such as poison oak and poison ivy, which are widespread in the United States.

Edible Uses:
Mango fruit is most delicious when ripen. Raw mango is eaten as Jam, Jelly, Chatni and various other forms.

Medicinal Uses:
In ayurveda, it is used in a Rasayana formula (q.v.), clearing digestion and acidity due to pitta (heat), sometimes with other mild sours and shatavari (Asparagus racemosus) and guduchi (Tinospora cordifolia). In this oriental system of traditional medicines, varied medicinal properties are attributed to different parts of the mango tree, both as food and medicine. It is anti-diuretic, anti-diarrheal, anti-emetic and cardiac herb.

The bark is astringent; it is used in diphtheria and rheumatism; it is believed to possess a tonic action on the mucous membrane. It is astringent, anthelmintic, useful in hemoptysis, hemorrhage, nasal catarrh, diarrhea, ulcers, diphtheria, rheumatism and for lumbrici. The leaves are given in the treatment of burns, scalds and diabetes. Mangiferin from the leaves has been reported to possess antiinflammatory, diuretic, chloretic and cardiotonic activities and displays a high antibacterial activity against gram positive bacteria. It has been recommended as a drug in preventing dental plaques. Mangiferin shows antiviral effect against type I herpes simplex virus (HSV-I).

Other Uses:….Wood
The tree is more known for its fruit rather than for its lumber. However, mango trees can be converted to lumber once their fruit bearing lifespan has finished. The wood is susceptible to damage from fungi and insects. The wood is used for musical instruments such as ukuleles, plywood and low-cost furniture. The wood is also known to produce phenolic substances that can cause contact dermatitis.

In culture:
In Theravada Buddhism, mango is said to have used as the tree for achieved enlightenment, or Bodhi by twenty third Lord Buddha called “Sikhi” The plant is known as ?? (Ambha) in Sinhala.

Author Pablo Antonio Cuadra, created a narrative of the Mango in Nicaragua; “the mango that arrived in Nicaragua from distant Hindustan.”, a single sapling that was placed on a ship in Hindustan and planted in a garden in Granada. Nicaragua is known for its many mangos.

Rivas, Nicaragua is known as “La Ciudad de Los Mangos”, which translates to the “City of Mangoes
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/Mangifera_indica
http://www.dreddyclinic.com/ayurvedic/herbs/ayurvedicherbs/ayurvedic_herbs_m.htm#Mangifera_indica

Pyrola asarifolia

Botanical Name : Pyrola asarifolia
Family: Ericaceae
Subfamily: Monotropoideae
Genus: Pyrola
Species: P. asarifolia
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Ericales

Common Names: Bog Wintergreen, Liverleaf wintergreen, Pink wintergreen, Pink Pyrola

Habitat : Pyrola asarifolia is native to N. America – Alaska to Newfoundland, south to New York, California and New Mexico.It grows on wet soils of bogs, stream courses and around springs, mostly in shady areas and especially in coniferous woodlands, from the plains to around 2,700 metres in the mountains.

Description:
Pyrola asarifolia is an evergreen Perennial plant, growing to 0.3 m (1ft) by 0.2 m (0ft 8in).
It is in leaf 12-Jan It is in flower from Jun to July. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects, self.The plant is self-fertile….CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES

Flowers: Raceme of 7 to 15 flowers on slender stalks at the top of the plant. Flowers are ½ to ¾ inch across with 5 round petals, pink or white with pink to pinkish purple edging, the edges often curled down. A cluster of stamens with dark pink to red tips is hidden under the upper petals. The style is light green, curved down and out below the lower petals like an elephant’s trunk.

Leaves and stem:
Leaves are basal, 1 to 1½ inches long, round to kidney shaped, often wider than long, the blade typically shorter than the leaf stalk. The tip may have slight point. The upper surface is very shiny. A few scale like leaves may be present on lower part of the flowering stem.
Cultivation:
Prefers a moist sandy woodland soil in a cool position with partial shade. Requires a peaty or leafy acid soil that remains moist in the summer.  This is a very difficult plant to grow. It requires a mycorrhizal relationship in the soil and therefore needs to be grown initially in soil collected from around an established plant. It is also very difficult from seed as well as being intolerant of root disturbance which makes division difficult. This species is extremely rare and endangered in the wild.
Propagation:
Seed – the only information we have on this species is that it is difficult from seed and germinates infrequently. We would suggest sowing the seed as soon as it is ripe if this is possible. Sow it into soil collected from around an established plant, only just covering the seed, and put the pot in a shady part of a cold frame. Pot up any young seedlings as soon as they are large enough to handle, once again using soil from around an established plant. Plant out into their permanent positions when the plants are large enough. You should not need to use soil from around an established plant to do this since the soil in the pot will contain the necessary micorrhiza. Division with great care in the spring. Pot up the divisions using some soil from around an established plant, grow on in a lightly shaded part of a greenhouse or frame and do not plant out until the plants are growing away vigorously.
Medicinal Uses:
This plant was considered to be an effective remedy in the treatment of rheumatism. A decoction of the leaves, or the leaves and roots, has been used as an eyewash for sore eyes. A decoction of the plant has been used to treat the coughing up of blood. A decoction of the root has been used to treat liver complaints.

Other Uses:
Plants can be used as a ground cover when spaced about 30cm apart each way. They are somewhat slow to settle down though, and only form a good cover when they are growing luxuriantly.

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/Pyrola_asarifolia
https://www.minnesotawildflowers.info/flower/pink-pyrola
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Pyrola+asarifolia