Tag Archives: Artemisia vulgaris

Artemisia persica

Botanical Name : Artemisia persica
Family: Asteraceae
Subfamily:Asteroideae
Tribe: Anthemideae
Genus: Artemisia
Kingdom:Plantae
Order: Asterales

Habitat :Artemisia persica is native to E. Asia – Himalayas from Afghanistan to northern India and western Tibet. It grows on rocky slopes and sandy beaches at an elevation of 2900 – 4000 metres.

Description:
Artemisia persica is a perennial plant. It is densely greyish tomentose, basally woody shrublet with several or occasionally solitary, 25-75 cm tall, ascending or upright, simple or branched, striate-costate, densely leaved, rarely glabrescent stems from a much branched, woody rootstock. Leaves 3-pinnatisect, primary and secondary rachis lobulate; basal and lower stem leaves with up to 1.5 cm long petiole, lamina oblong-obovate, 1.2-3.5 (-4.5) x 0.8-2 cm, primary segments ascending to patent, ultimate segments linear-oblong to lanceolate, 1.5-2.5 x 0.5-0.8 (-1) mm, obtuse; upper leaves sessile and gradually smaller; uppermost in floral region linear. Capitula heterogamous, on (1-) 2-4 mm long peduncles, remote, subglobose, c. 3-3.5 mm long and broad, secund nodding in narrow, ± oblong-pyramidate, up to 30 x 8-12 cm panicle with ascending to obliquely erect, 6-20 cm long branches. Involucre 3-4-seriate; phyllaries loosely imbricate, ± keeled; outermost linear-oblong, c. 2 mm long; inner elliptic, 2-2.5 x 0.75-1 mm, obtuse, hoary pubescent in the middle part, margins scarious. Receptacle convex, densely to laxly long hairy or almost glabrous. Florets all fertile, yellow, 40-50; marginal florets 8-12, with compressed, c. 0.8 mm long, punctate-glandulose corolla tube; disc-florets bisexual, 30-40, with 5-dentate, apically densely long hairy, 1-1.5 mm long corolla tube. Cypselas light brown, oblong, c. 1 mm long, smooth.

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It is in flower from Jul to October, and the seeds ripen from Aug to October. 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, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. 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 and can tolerate drought.

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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 should succeed outdoors in many parts of this country. The following notes are based on the general needs of the genus. Easily grown in a well-drained circumneutral or slightly alkaline loamy soil, preferring a warm sunny dry position. Established plants are drought tolerant. Plants are longer lived, more hardy and more aromatic when they are grown in a poor dry soil. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer.

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Propagation:
Seed – surface sow from late winter to early summer in a greenhouse, making sure that the compost does not dry out. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for their first winter. Plant out in late spring or early summer. Division in spring or autumn. Basal cuttings in late spring. Harvest the young shoots when about10 – 15cm long, pot up in a lightly shaded position in a greenhouse or cold frame and plant them out when well rooted. Very easy.

Medicinal Uses:
The plant is strongly scented and used as a tonic, febrifuge and vermifuge in Afghanistan and Chitral.

Known Hazards : Although no reports of toxicity have been seen for this species, skin contact with some members of this genus can cause dermatitis or other allergic reactions 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.

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Resources:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artemisia_(genus)
http://www.efloras.org/florataxon.aspx?flora_id=5&taxon_id=200023300
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Artemisia+persica

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Campanula trachelium

Botanical Name ; Campanula trachelium
Family: Campanulaceae
Genus: Campanula
Species: C. trachelium
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Asterales
Common Name :Nettle-leaved Bellflower,bats-in-the-belfry

Habitat ;Campanula trachelium is a Eurasian blue wildflower native to Denmark and England and now naturalized in southeast Ireland. It is also found southward through Europe into Africa and is also found in North America and Germany.

Description:
Life cycle : perennial (Z4-9)
Flowers: violet-blue
Size :18″
Light full : sun-part shade
Cultural notes: well-drained soil, not too dry


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Typical bellflower, with blue flowers on an upright but fairly small plant, with dark green leaves. Close-up inspection shows that the flowers and stems are slightly hairy. The flowering plants from last year didn’t return this year (although last year’s seedlings did, and are blooming now) – so it seems to have a biennial habit at least in our climate.

Medicinal Uses:
For pains in the ear, the blossoms of bellflower were gathered, boiling in a covered pan and after steeping the liquid, used to wash the ears.  If one had pain in the stomach, the root of this plant was cooked and spirits added.  After steeping for three hours, a small drink helped ease the pain.  In the smaller villages of Poland, children suffering from consumption were bathed in this herb: if the child’s skin darkened after such a bath, it was a sign that he/she would live.  If it didn’t, the disease would take them.

The alternate name Throatwort is derived from an old belief that Nettle-leafed campanulas are a cure for sore throat, & the species name trachelium refers to this old belief. There never was an actual medical benefit from the plant, which had no observable effect on the throat. But in past centuries, belief in the occult Doctrine of Signatures was very deeply stamped on superstitioius “believers.”

Other folknames include Our Lady’s Bells because the color blue was identified with the Virgin Mary’s scarf, veil, or shawl; Coventry Bells because C. trachelium was especially common in fields around Coventry; & “Bats-in-the-Belfry” or in the singular “Bat-in-the-Belfry,” because the stamens inside the flower were like bats hanging in the bell of a church steeple. Web site reference: http://www.paghat.com/gardenhome.html

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.robsplants.com/plants/CampaTrach
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_AB.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Campanula_trachelium

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Hermal

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Botanical Name : Peganum Hermala
Family: Nitrariaceae
Genus: Peganum
Species:P. harmala
Kingdom:Plantae
Order: Sapindales

Common Names :Syrian Rue,  Hermal, Sirski Rue, Harmal peganum

Harmal seeds or sometimes Esphand or Espand from the Persian word where it originates from, Wild rue, Persian rue, Hermal seeds, or Harmal seeds

Habitat : Peganum Hermala  is native to Europe – Mediterranean and Southeast Europe  It grows  om dry steppes, especially where grazing is heavy, and dry waste places. It is often found in saline soils.

Description:
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It is a bushy herb with leaves divided into numerous narrow segments. It has white solitary flowers, spherical fruits and brownish seeds in various shapes.

The seeds ripen in September. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs)Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in saline soils.

Cultivation details
Prefers a light well-drained but moisture retentive soil and an open position in full sun.   Prefers a dry soil[ and succeeds in poor soils.

Although this species comes from dry desert areas, it responds well to cultivation so long as the soil is very well drained. It can tolerate temperatures down to about -20°c if the soil is dry.

There is speculation that this plant was the sacred ‘Soma’ plant, which was used by the ancients of India and Persia as an hallucinogenic aid to understanding the deeper meaning of life.
Propagation
Seed – sow late spring in a greenhouse. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and grow them on in a sunny part of the greenhouse for their first winter. Be careful not to overwater, especially when the plants are dormant. Plant out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer.

Edible Uses: Condiment; Oil; Oil.

Seed – used as a spice and purifying agent. Some caution is advised because the seed has narcotic properties, inducing a sense of euphoria and releasing inhibitions. An edible oil is obtained from the seed.

Traditional uses:
It has been used as an entheogen in the Middle East, and in modern Western culture, it is often used as an analogue of Banisteriopsis caapi to create Ayahuasca, a South American entheogen. Syrian Rue, however, has a distinctly different chemical makeup than caapi, and a unique character of its own.

In Turkey, dried capsules from this plant are strung and hung in homes and vehicles to protect against the evil eye.

In Iran, dried capsules – mixed with other ingredients – are burnt so as to produce a light, distinctly scented smoke. It is used as an air as well as mind purifier, to be linked to its believed entheogenic properties. This practice, which roots back in pre-Islamic – Zoroastrian – times, is still used by the Iranians.

The active alkaloids of Harmal seeds are the MAOI (MonoAmine Oxidase Inhibitor) compounds harmine, harmaline, and tetrahydroharmine (collectively known as harmala alkaloids).

Medicinal Uses:
Disclaimer

Abortifacient; Alterative; Aphrodisiac; Digestive; Diuretic; Emmenagogue; Galactogogue; Hallucinogenic; Narcotic; Ophthalmic; Parasiticide; Uterine tonic; Vermifuge.

The seeds of which can be taken internally in minute doses, providing a valuable Ayurvedic remedy against depression.  They have also been taken to treat eye disorders and to stimulate breast-milk production.  In central Asia, harmala root is a popular medicinal remedy, used in the treatment of rheumatism and nervous conditions.

Alterative.
The fruit and seed are digestive, diuretic, hallucinogenic, narcotic and uterine stimulant. They are taken internally in the treatment of stomach complaints, urinary and sexual disorders, epilepsy, menstrual problems, mental and nervous illnesses. The seed has also been used as an anthelmintic in order to rid the body of tapeworms This remedy should be used with caution and preferably under the guidance of a qualified practitioner since excessive doses cause vomiting and hallucinations. The seeds contain the substance ‘harmine’ which is being used in research into mental disease, encephalitis and inflammation of the brain. Small quantities stimulate the brain and are said to be therapeutic, but in excess harmine depresses the central nervous system. A crude preparation of the seed is more effective than an extract because of the presence of related indoles.

Consumption of the seed in quantity induces a sense of euphoria and releases inhibitions. It has been used in the past as a truth drug.

The oil obtained from the seed is said to be aphrodisiac. The oil is also said to have galactogogue, ophthalmic, soporific and vermifuge properties.

The seed is used externally in the treatment of haemorrhoids and baldness.

The whole plant is said to be abortifacient, aphrodisiac, emmenagogue and galactogogue. A decoction of the leaves is used in the treatment of rheumatism.

The root has been used as a parasiticide in order to kill body lice. It is also used internally in the treatment of rheumatism and nervous conditions.

Other Uses
Dye; Incense; Miscellany; Oil.
A red dye is obtained from the seed. It is widely used in Western Asia, especially as a colouring for carpets.

The ripe seed contains 3.8 – 5.8% of the alkaloids harmine, harmaline, harmalol and peganine. Ineffective as a contact poison, they are active in vapour form where they are effective against algae, in higher concentrations to water animals and lethal to moulds, bacteria and intestinal parasites.

The seed is used as an incense.

Known Hazards: Use with caution. Although the seed is used medicinally and as a condiment, it does contain hallucinogenic and narcotic alkaloids[238]. When taken in excess it causes hallucinations and vomiting.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein by 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?Peganum+harmala

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harmal

http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Peganum+harmala

http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_RST.htm

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