Tag Archives: Apricot

Lactuca ludoviciana

Botanical Name: Lactuca ludoviciana
Family: Asteraceae
Tribe: Cichorieae
Genus: Lactuca
Species: L. ludoviciana
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Asterales

Synonyms:
*Galathenium ludovicianum (Nutt.) Nutt.
*Lactuca campestris Greene
*Sonchus ludovicianus Nutt.

Common Names: Western Wild Lettuce, Biannual lettuce(Biennials are herbaceous plants that live two years, flowering the second)

Habitat: Lactuca ludoviciana is native to Eastern N. America – Manitoba to Wisconsin and southwards. IT grows on prairies, low ground and roadsides. Usually found in calcareous soils.
Description:
Lactuca ludoviciana is an biennial herb in the dandelion tribe within the daisy family growing from a taproot a height of up to 150 cm (5 feet). The top of the stem bears a multibranched inflorescence with many flower heads. Each head contains 20-50 yellow ray florets but no disc florets. Leaves on proximal 1/2–3/4 of each stem; blades of undivided cauline leaves obovate or oblanceolate to spatulate, margins denticulate (piloso-ciliate), midribs usually piloso-setose. Heads in paniculiform arrays. Involucres 12–15+ mm. Phyllaries usually reflexed in fruit. Florets 20–50+; corollas usually yellow, sometimes bluish, usually deliquescent. Cypselae: bodies brown to blackish (usually mottled), ± flattened, elliptic, 4.5–5+ mm, beaks ± filiform, 2.5–4.5 mm, faces 1(–3)-nerved; pappi white, 5–7(–11) mm. 2n = 34.

Flowering time is Jun–Sep. Flower color is yellow.
CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES : 

The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) 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:
The plant grows well in light sandy loam. Hybridizes in the wild with L. canadensis and the two species can sometimes be difficult to separate.

Propagation:
Seed – sow spring in situ and only just cover the seed. Germination is usually fairly quick.

Edible Uses: The leaves are eatet raw or cooked.

Medicinal Uses:
Most if not all members of the genus have a milky sap that contains the substance ‘lactucarium’ and can probably be used as the report below details. The whole plant is rich in a milky sap that flows freely from any wounds. This hardens and dries when in contact with the air. The sap contains ‘lactucarium’, which is used in medicine for its anodyne, antispasmodic, digestive, diuretic, hypnotic, narcotic and sedative properties. Lactucarium has the effects of a feeble opium, but without its tendency to cause digestive upsets, nor is it addictive. It is taken internally in the treatment of insomnia, anxiety, neuroses, hyperactivity in children, dry coughs, whooping cough, rheumatic pain etc. Concentrations of lactucarium are low in young plants and most concentrated when the plant comes into flower. It is collected commercially by cutting the heads of the plants and scraping the juice into china vessels several times a day until the plant is exhausted. An infusion of the fresh or dried flowering plant can also be used. The plant should be used with caution, and never without the supervision of a skilled practitioner. Even normal doses can cause drowsiness whilst excess causes restlessness and overdoses can cause death through cardiac paralysis. Some physicians believe that any effects of this medicine are caused by the mind of the patient rather than by the medicine. The sap has also been applied externally in the treatment of warts

Known Hazards : Although no specific mention of toxicity has been seen for this species, many plants in this genus contain a narcotic principle, this is at its most concentrated when the plant begins to flower. This principle has been almost bred out of the cultivated forms of lettuce but is produced when the plant starts to go to seed.

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/Lactuca_ludoviciana
http://www.efloras.org/florataxon.aspx?flora_id=1&taxon_id=242416716
http://www.kansasnativeplants.com/guide/plant_detail.php?plnt_id=725
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Lactuca+ludoviciana

Advertisements

Prunus persica

Botanical Name: Prunus persica
Family: Rosaceae
Genus: Prunus
Subgenus: Amygdalus
Species: P. persica
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Rosales

Synonyms: Amygdalis Persica (Linn.). Persica vulgaris Null.
(Chinese and Japanese) ‘Too’.

Common Name: Peach,Nectarine

Habitat: Prunus persica is native to Northwest China, in the region between the Tarim Basin and the north slopes of the Kunlun Shan mountains, where it was first domesticated and cultivated.

Description:
Prunus persica is a decidous tree. It grows to 4–10 m (13–33 ft) tall and 6 in. in diameter. The leaves are lanceolate, 7–16 cm (2.8–6.3 in) long, 2–3 cm (0.79–1.18 in) broad, pinnately veined. The flowers are produced in early spring before the leaves; they are solitary or paired, 2.5–3 cm diameter, pink, with five petals. The fruit has yellow or whitish flesh, a delicate aroma, and a skin that is either velvety (peaches) or smooth (nectarines) in different cultivars. The flesh is very delicate and easily bruised in some cultivars, but is fairly firm in some commercial varieties, especially when green. The single, large seed is red-brown, oval shaped, approximately 1.3–2 cm long, and is surrounded by a wood-like husk. Peaches, along with cherries, plums and apricots, are stone fruits (drupes). There are various heirloom varieties, including the Indian peach, which arrives in the latter part of the summer…….CLICK  &  SEE  THE  PICTURES

Cultivated peaches are divided into clingstones and freestones, depending on whether the flesh sticks to the stone or not; both can have either white or yellow flesh. Peaches with white flesh typically are very sweet with little acidity, while yellow-fleshed peaches typically have an acidic tang coupled with sweetness, though this also varies greatly. Both colours often have some red on their skin. Low-acid white-fleshed peaches are the most popular kinds in China, Japan, and neighbouring Asian countries, while Europeans and North Americans have historically favoured the acidic, yellow-fleshed kinds
Parts Used: Bark, leaves.

Cultivation:
The soil best suited for the Peach is three parts mellow, unexhausted loam, mixed with vegetable mould or manure. Peaches require a lighter soil than pears or plums.

To perpetuate and multiply the choicer varieties, both the Peach and the newly-allied nectarine are budded upon plums or almond stocks. For dry soil, the almond stocks are preferable; for damp or clayey loam, it is better to use certain kinds of plums.

The fruit is produced on the ripened shoots of the preceding year, and the formation of young shoots in sufficient abundance, and of requisite strength, is the great object of peach training and pruning.

In cold soils and bleak situations, it is considered best to cover the walls upon which the trees are trained with a casing of glass, so that the trees may be under shelter during uncongenial spring weather.

Various kinds of Aphis and the Acarus, or Red Spider, infest the leaves of the Peach.

Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Flowers; Fruit; Oil; Oil; Seed.
Edible Uses: Gum; Oil; Oil; Tea.

Fruit – raw, cooked or dried for later use. The fruit is often used in ice creams, pies, jams etc. When fully ripe, the fruits of the best forms are soft and juicy with a rich delicious flavour. The size of fruit varies between cultivars but can be up to 7cm in diameter and contains one large seed. Flowers – raw or cooked. Added to salads or used as a garnish. They can also be brewed into a tea. The distilled flowers yield a white liquid which can be used to impart a flavour resembling the seed. Seed – raw or cooked. Do not eat if it is too bitter, seed can contain high concentrations of hydrocyanic acid which is highly toxic. A semi-drying oil is obtained from the seed. Although the report does not mention edibility it can be assumed that it is edible. A gum is obtained from the stem. It can be used for chewing.

Medicinal Uses:
Alterative; Antiasthmatic; Antitussive; Astringent; Demulcent; Diuretic; Emollient; Expectorant; Febrifuge; Haemolytic; Laxative;
Sedative.

Antihalitosis. The leaves are astringent, demulcent, diuretic, expectorant, febrifuge, laxative, parasiticide and mildly sedative. They are used internally in the treatment of gastritis, whooping cough, coughs and bronchitis. They also help to relieve vomiting and morning sickness during pregnancy, though the dose must be carefully monitored because of their diuretic action. The dried and powdered leaves have sometimes been used to help heal sores and wounds. The leaves are harvested in June and July then dried for later use. The flowers are diuretic, sedative and vermifuge. They are used internally in the treatment of constipation and oedema. A gum from the stems is alterative, astringent, demulcent and sedative. The seed is antiasthmatic, antitussive, emollient, haemolytic, laxative and sedative. It is used internally in the treatment of constipation in the elderly, coughs, asthma and menstrual disorders. The bark is demulcent, diuretic, expectorant and sedative. It is used internally in the treatment of gastritis, whooping cough, coughs and bronchitis. The root bark is used in the treatment of dropsy and jaundice. The bark is harvested from young trees in the spring and is dried for later use. The seed contains ‘laetrile’, a substance that has also been called vitamin B17. This has been claimed to have a positive effect in the treatment of cancer, but there does not at present seem to be much evidence to support this. The pure substance is almost harmless, but on hydrolysis it yields hydrocyanic acid, a very rapidly acting poison – it should thus be treated with caution. In small amounts this exceedingly poisonous compound stimulates respiration, improves digestion and gives a sense of well-being.

Other Uses
Adhesive; Cleanser; Dye; Gum; Oil; Oil.

A green dye can be obtained from the leaves. A dark grey to green dye can be obtained from the fruit. A semi-drying oil is obtained from the seed. It is used as a substitute for almond oil in skin creams. The bruised leaves, when rubbed within any container, will remove strong odours such as garlic or cloves so long as any grease has first been fully cleaned off. A gum obtained from the stem is used as an adhesive.

Cultural Significance:
Peaches are not only a popular fruit, but are symbolic in many cultural traditions, such as in art, paintings and folk tales such as Peaches of Immortality.

Peach blossoms are highly prized in Chinese culture. The ancient Chinese believed the peach to possess more vitality than any other tree because their blossoms appear before leaves sprout.

The Chinese also considered peach wood (t’ao-fu) protective against evil spirits, who held the peach in awe. In ancient China, peach-wood bows were used to shoot arrows in every direction in an effort to dispel evil. Peach-wood slips or carved pits served as amulets to protect a person’s life, safety, and health.

Aroma: Some 110 chemical compounds contribute to peach aroma, including alcohols, ketones, aldehydes, esters, polyphenols and terpenoids.

Known Hazards:
The seed can contain high levels of hydrogen cyanide, a poison that gives almonds their characteristic flavour. This toxin is readily detected by its bitter taste. Usually present in too small a quantity to do any harm, 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 supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peach
http://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/p/peach-17.html
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Prunus+persica+nucipersica

Ribes rubrum

Botanical Name :Ribes rubrum
Family: Grossulariaceae
Genus: Ribes
Species: R. rubrum
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Saxifragales

Synonyms: Ribs. Risp. Reps.
Common Names: Red currant or Redcurrant

Habitat: Ribes rubrum is native to parts of western Europe (Belgium, Great Britain ergo England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales, France, Norway, Sweden, Germany, Netherlands, northern Italy, northern Spain, Portugal and Poland). The plant is grown equally at home in hedges and ditches, trained against the wall of a house, or as a shrub cultivated in gardens.
Description:
Ribes rubrum is a deciduous shrub normally growing to 1–1.5 m (3.3–4.9 ft) tall, occasionally 2 m (7 ft), with five-lobed leaves arranged spirally on the stems. The flowers are inconspicuous yellow-green, in pendulous 4–8 cm (2–3 in) racemes, maturing into bright red translucent edible berries about 8–12 mm (0.3–0.5 in) diameter, with 3–10 berries on each raceme. An established bush can produce 3–4 kg (7–9 lb) of berries from mid to late summer…..CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES
Cultivation:
There are several other similar species native in Europe, Asia and North America, also with edible fruit. These include Ribes spicatum (northern Europe and northern Asia), Ribes alpinum (northern Europe), R. schlechtendalii (northeast Europe), R. multiflorum (southeast Europe), R. petraeum (southwest Europe) and R. triste (North America; Newfoundland to Alaska and southward in mountains).

While Ribes rubrum and R. nigrum are native to northern and eastern Europe, large berried cultivars of the redcurrant were first produced in Belgium and northern France in the 17th century. In modern times, numerous cultivars have been selected; some of these have escaped gardens and can be found in the wild across Europe and extending into Asia.

The white currant is also a cultivar of Ribes rubrum. Although it is a sweeter and albino variant of the redcurrant, it is not a separate botanical species and is sometimes marketed with names such as Ribes sativum or Ribes silvestre, or sold as a different fruit.

Currant bushes prefer partial to full sunlight and can grow in most types of soil. They are relatively low-maintenance plants and can also be used as ornamentation.

Edible Uses:
With maturity, the tart flavour of redcurrant fruit is slightly greater than its blackcurrant relative, but with the same approximate sweetness. The albino variant of redcurrant, often referred to as white currant, has the same tart flavour but with greater sweetness. Although frequently cultivated for jams and cooked preparations, much like the white currant, it is often served raw or as a simple accompaniment in salads, garnishes, or drinks when in season.
In the United Kingdom, redcurrant jelly is a condiment often served with lamb, game meat including venison, turkey and goose in a festive or Sunday roast. It is essentially a jam and is made in the same way, by adding the redcurrants to sugar, boiling, and straining.

In France, the highly rarefied and hand-made Bar-le-duc or Lorraine jelly is a spreadable preparation traditionally made from white currants or alternatively red currants.

In Scandinavia and Schleswig-Holstein, it is often used in fruit soups and summer puddings (Rødgrød, Rote Grütze or Rode Grütt). In Germany it is also used in combination with custard or meringue as a filling for tarts. In Linz, Austria, it is the most commonly used filling for the Linzer torte.  It can be enjoyed in its fresh state without the addition of sugar.

In German-speaking areas, syrup or nectar derived from the red currant is added to soda water and enjoyed as a refreshing drink named Johannisbeerschorle. It is so named because the redcurrants (Johannisbeeren, “John’s berry” in German) are said to ripen first on St. John’s Day, also known as Midsummer Day, June 24.

In Russia, redcurrants are ubiquitous and used in jams, preserves, compotes and desserts; while leaves have many uses in traditional medicine.

In Mexico, redcurrants are a popular flavour for iced/frappé drinks and desserts, most commonly in ‘raspado’ (scraped ice) form.

Part Used in medicine: The fruits, especially the juice.

Constituents: The juice is said to contain citric acid, malic acid, sugar, vegetable jelly and jam.

Medicinal Uses:
Refrigerant, aperient, antiscorbutic. The juice forms a refreshing drink in fever, and the jelly, made from equal weights of fruit and sugar, when eaten with ‘high’ meats, acts as an anti-putrescent. The wine made from white ‘red’ currants has been used for calculous affections.

In some cases the fruit causes flatulence and indigestion. It has frequently given much help in forms of visceral obstruction. The jelly is antiseptic, and will ease the pain of a burn and prevent the formation of blisters, if applied immediately. Some regard the leaves as having emmenagogue properties.

Poison and Antidotes: In common with other acidulous fruits, they must be turned out of an open tin immediately into a glass or earthenware dish, or the action of the acid combining with the surrounding air will begin to engender a deadly metallic poison.

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/Redcurrant
http://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/c/currd132.html

Valerianella olitoria

Botanical Name: Valerianella olitoria
Family: Caprifoliaceae
Genus: Valerianella
Species: V. locusta
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Dipsacales
Synonyms:   Lamb’s Lettuce. Valerian locusta (Linn.). White Pot Herb. Lactuca agnina.
(French) Loblollie. Mâche. Doucette. Salade de Chanoine. Salade de Prêtre.

Common names: Corn salad, Common cornsalad, Lamb’s lettuce,  Mâche, Fetticus,  Feldsalat, Nut lettuce,  Field salad, and Rapunzel. In restaurants that feature French cooking, it may be called doucette or raiponce
Habitat : Valerianella olitoria is native to Europe, including Britain, from Scandanavia south and east to N. Africa and W. Asia. It is  now grows wild in parts of Europe, northern Africa and western Asia. In Europe and Asia it is a common weed in cultivated land and waste spaces. In North America it has escaped cultivation and become naturalized on both the eastern and western seaboards
Description:
Valerianella olitoria is a small, annual, bright-green plant, with succulent stems, 6 to 12 inches high, generally forking from the very base, or at least within the lowest quarter of their height. The first leaves, springing from the root, are 1 to 3 inches long, bluntly lance-shaped scarcely-stalked, generally decaying early. The stem leaves are quite stalkless, often stem-clasping. The flowers are minute and are greenish-white in appearance, arranged in close, rounded, terminal heads, surrounded by narrow bracts, the tiny corolla is pale lilac, but so small that the heads of flowers do not give the appearance of any colour…..CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES

Cultivation & propagation:   When cultivated in gardens, Valerianella olitoria may be sown in rows all through the autumn, winter and early spring, so as to produce a constant succession of crops. A small portion of garden earth sown with the seeds in August, will supply an excellent portion of the salad throughout the winter. The younger the leaves, the better they taste in salad.

Edible Uses: Young leaves  is eaten  raw as salad. A very mild flavour, with a delicate quality that makes them seem to melt in the mouth, they can be added in quantity to salads. The leaves can be available all year round from successional sowings and will only require protection in the colder winters. Flowers and flowering stems  are also  eaten raw.

Nutrition:
Valerianella olitoria  or corn salad has many nutrients, including three times as much vitamin C as lettuce, beta-carotene, B6, iron, and potassium. It is best if gathered before flowers appear

Medicinal Uses:
This herb was in request by country folk in former days as a spring medicine, and a homoeopathic medicinal tincture is made from the fresh root.

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/Valerianella_locusta
http://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/c/corsa104.html
http://www.pfaf.org/user/plant.aspx?LatinName=Valerianella+locusta

Rumex hymenosepalus

Botanical Name :Rumex hymenosepalus
Family: Polygonaceae
Genus: Rumex
Species: R. hymenosepalus
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Caryophyllales

Synonyms :Rumex arizonicus Britton,Rumex salinus A.Nelson,Rumex hymenosepalus var. salinus (A. Nelson) Rech.,Rumex saxei Kellogg

Common Name : Canaigre dock,  Canaigre or Wild Rhubarb,

Habitat : Rumex hymenosepalus  is native to the United States and  it is found on sandy roadsides and fields at lower to middle elevations.It has been cultivated in the southwestern United States.  It grows in dry sandy places below 1500 metres in California

Description:
Rumex hymenosepalus is a perennial flowering plant with tall reddish colored stems .Rumex hymenosepalus grows very large basal leaves early in the spring.  The leaves are elliptic, thick, and wider than those of Rumex crispus.  The leaves can be wavy at the margin, but usually not as much as with Rumex crispus.A tall, stout flower stalk follows with tiny green/red/yellow flowers that are replaced by showy pink/red/brown seed pods.  Early leaves of this and related Rumex species are palatable as a potherb, giving rise to the “Wild Rhubarb” common name.  Leaves persist through the summer but toughen with age.  A number of species of Rumex are found in Canyon Country and were probably a common food for the Anasazi.
CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES

The reproductive panicles are thickly packed  . Typically, Rumex hymenosepalus leaves are among the first early signs of spring in the lower parts of the Gila. The stems are reddish with an interior that is somewhat spongy with airspaces.
Cultivation : Succeeds in most soils but prefers a deep fertile moderately heavy soil that is humus-rich, moisture-retentive but well-drained and a position in full-sun or part shade. Judging by its native range, this plant should succeed in dry soils. Extensively cultivated for the tannin contained in its root.

Propagation : Seed – sow spring in situ. Division in spring.

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

Young leaves – cooked as a pot-herb. They are usually cooked in several changes of water to remove the bitter-tasting tannin. Leaf stems – cooked. Crisp and tart, they are excellent when used in pies like rhubarb. They are often cooked with sugar, or can be baked and the central portion eaten. The stems, harvested before the flowers open, have been boiled to make a drink. Seed – raw or cooked. It can be ground into a powder, cooked with water to the consistency of a thick gravy and eaten as a mush. The powder can also be mixed with water, shaped into cakes and baked. Root. Eaten raw by children in early spring.

Medicinal Uses:
The use of cañaigre root in folk medicine has been as an astringent, prepared as a tea for diarrhea and as a garble for sore throat.  These uses are probably effective, owing to the plant’s high tannin content.  Herbalists have traditionally relied upon cañaigre as an astringent.  They used its large tuberous roots to make a tea for treating diarrhea and a gargle for easing sore throat.  One herbal suggests using the boiled root extract to stop bleeding from minor scrapes and cuts.  For sunburn, the root can be grated fresh on the burned skin, allowed to dry and a poultice of the inner pith of the cactus placed over or the juice rubbed in.  An infusion of the stems and leaves has been used as a wash for sores, ant bites and infected cuts.  The root has been chewed in the treatment of coughs and colds. The dried, powdered roots have been used as a dusting powder and dressing on burns and sores. A tea made from this plant is used to treat colds. The dried root combined with water is used as a mouthwash for pyorrhea and gum inflammations.  Sucking on a slice tightens the teeth.  The tea is used as a wash for acne and other moist or greasy skin problems.

Other Uses:
The roots are a good source of tannin, for use in leather tanning.  It is also a source of a mustard-colored dye.

Known Hazards : Plants can contain quite high levels of oxalic acid, which is what gives the leaves of many members of this genus an acid-lemon flavour. Perfectly alright in small quantities, the leaves should not be eaten in large amounts since the oxalic acid can lock-up other nutrients in the food, especially calcium, thus causing mineral deficiencies. The oxalic acid content will be reduced if the plant is cooked. People with a tendency to rheumatism, arthritis, gout, kidney stones or hyperacidity should take especial caution if including this plant in their diet since it can aggravate their condition.

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.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_C.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rumex_hymenosepalus
http://www.swcoloradowildflowers.com/Brown%20Green%20Enlarged%20Photo%20Pages/rumex%20hymenosepalus.htm
http://www.wnmu.edu/academic/nspages/gilaflora/rumex_hymenosepalus.html

http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Rumex+hymenosepalus

Enhanced by Zemanta