Tag Archives: Autumn leaf color

Ardisia crenata

Botanical Name: Ardisia crenata
Family: Primulaceae
Genus: Ardisia
Species: A. crenata
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Ericales

Common Names: Christmas berry, Australian holly, Coral ardisia, Coral bush, Coralberry, Coralberry tree, Hen’s-eyes, and Spiceberry

Habitat:Ardisia crenata is native to E. Asia – China, Japan, Korea, India. It grows in woods in low mountains, C. and S. Japan. Forests, hillsides, valleys, shrubby areas, dark damp places at elevations of 100 – 2400 metres.
Description:
Ardisia crenata is an upright perennial shrub that grows 1.5–6 feet (0.46–1.83 m) tall. It maintains a caespitose growth pattern and is often multi-trunked. It prefers moist soil and germination can occur from pH 4 to pH 10. It does well in temperatures of 25°C and above. Germination rates are as high as 98% after 40 days. Its leaves are simple, alternate and measure up to 8 inches long. They are waxy and dark green with a crenate margin containing small calluses within the ridges. The leaf tips are acuminate and their petioles are 3–10 mm long. They have a central vein with up to 18 pairs of side veins. Flowers are white or pink with yellow anthers and grow in axillary clusters and are very often covered in multiple black spots. Plants begin to bear fruit two years after sprouting. It has an abundance of spherical, 1-seeded red berries of about 0.25 inches in diameter that remain on the plant throughout the year. The berry clusters often sag down below the glossy foliage. Berries are dispersed by birds and, when present, raccoons through consumption and subsequent excretion and also by water flow.
Cultivation:
Prefers a well-drained humus rich soil in partial shade in a position sheltered from cold drying winds. We are not sure if this plant is hardy outdoors in Britain. One report says that it is hardy in zone 7 (tolerating temperatures down to between -10 and -15°c) but then goes on to suggest that it needs an essentially frost-free climate and is often grown as an indoor pot plant in Britain. This species is closely related to A. pseudocrispa, from which it differs in having crenate leaves with a distinct marginal vein. There has been some confusion between this species and A. crispa, the name Ardisia crispa was misapplied by de Candolle to Ardisia crenata. Special Features:Attractive foliage, Not North American native, Invasive, Fragrant flowers…...CLICK & SEE  THE PICTURES

Propagation:
Seed – best harvested when it is ripe in the winter and sown immediately in a greenhouse. Sow stored seed as early in the year as possible. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a shady part of the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, once the plants are 20cm or more tall. Cuttings of half-ripe wood in summer. Grow on in cool, shaded humid conditions until well rooted.

Mechanical Uses:
The root is anodyne, depurative, febrifuge. It is used to stimulate blood circulation.

Mechanical control of Ardisia crenata is a challenge. Useful methods include hand-pulling in the case of small-scale invasions. This is not a very efficient method due to the difficulty of eliminating all the surrounding berries littering the ground that will soon replace the removed material. Another option is discing, which tills the soil up in hopes of destroying the rhizomes. This must be carefully administered to prevent harm of the surrounding local flora and ensuring that the rhizomes are subdued. Cutting as well as burning prove to be ineffective due to the strongly rhizomatous nature of the plant. If a mechanical method is used to control the plant, the site must be regularly monitored for at least a year in order to ensure elimination of Christma

Other Uses:
Landscape Uses: Container. Used as an ornamental plant in shady conditions.

Known Hazards: There are suspicions that the plant may be poisonous to pets, livestock, and/or humans, but there has been no scientific confirmation of this.

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=Ardisia+crenata
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ardisia_crenata

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Asarum caudatum

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

Synonyms: Asarum hookeri Fielding & Gardner, Asarum rotundifolium Raf.

Common Names: British Columbia wild ginger, western wild ginger, or long-tailed wild ginger.

Habitat :Asarum caudatum is native to Western N. America – British Columbia to California. It grows on deep shade in moist pine woods and redwood forests. Understory of conifer forests, usually in mesic or wet places from sea level to 1200 metres and occasionally to 2200 metres.

Description:
Asarum caudatum is an evergreen Perennial growing to 0.1 m (0ft 4in) by 0.3 m (1ft) at a fast rate. It is in leaf 12-Jan It is in flower from Jul to August. The flowers are distinct, hirsute (hairy), cup-shaped, and brown-purple to green-yellow which terminate in three, long, gracefully curved lobes, often concealed by leaves. The long rhizomes give rise to persistent reniform (kidney/heart shaped) leaves. Leaves are found in colonies or clusters as the rhizome spreads, forming mats. The leaves emit a ginger aroma when rubbed.

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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 and neutral 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. 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. Special Features:Attractive foliage, North American native, Fragrant foliage, Inconspicuous flowers or blooms.

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.
Edible Uses: Condiment; Tea.
The root can be used as a ginger substitute. The root has a pungent, aromatic smell like mild pepper and ginger mixed, but more strongly aromatic. It can be harvested all year round, but is best in the autumn. It can also be dried for later use. Leaves are a tea substitute.

Medicinal Uses:
The root is laxative, stomachic and tonic. A tea made from the root is used in the treatment of colds, colic, indigestion and stomach pains. The root is harvested in the autumn and dried for later use. The whole plant is analgesic, antirheumatic, appetizer and tonic. A decoction is used externally to treat headaches, intestinal pain and knee pains. A poultice made from the heated leaves is applied to boils, skin infections and toothaches, whilst a decoction of the leaves is used as a wash on sores.

Other Uses :
A useful ground-cover plant for deep shade, spreading by its roots.Landscape Uses:Ground cover, Woodland garden.

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_caudatum
http://www.pfaf.org/user/plant.aspx?latinname=Asarum+caudatum

Astragalus floridus

Botanical Name : Astragalus floridus
Family: Fabaceae
Subfamily: Faboideae
Tribe: Galegeae
Subtribe: Astragalinae
Genus: Astragalus
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Fabales

Common Name : Duo Hua Huang Qi

Habitat : Astragalus floridus is native to East AsiaHimalayas. It grows in the forests and alpine meadows at elevations of 3800-4400 metres in the Himalayan regions of Sikkim and western China.

Description:
Astragalus floridus is a perennial herb growing to 0.3 m (1ft). It is in flower from Jul to August, and the seeds ripen from Aug to September. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees, lepidoptera.It can fix Nitrogen.
Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry soil.   CLICK  &  SEE THE PICTURES

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. Whilst it is likely to tolerate low temperatures it may not be so happy with a wet winter. The following notes are based on the general needs of the genus. Requires a dry well-drained soil in a sunny position. Succeeds in poor soils. Plants are intolerant of root disturbance and are best planted in their final positions whilst still small. This plant is a sub-shrub and although it produces woody stems these tend to die back almost to the base each winter. This species has a symbiotic relationship with certain soil bacteria, these bacteria form nodules on the roots and fix atmospheric nitrogen. Some of this nitrogen is utilized by the growing plant but some can also be used by other plants growing nearby. Many members of this genus can be difficult to grow, this may be due partly to a lack of their specific bacterial associations in the soil.
Propagation:
Seed – best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame. A period of cold stratification may help stored seed to germinate. Stored seed, and perhaps also fresh seed, should be pre-soaked for 24 hours in hot water before sowing – but make sure that you do not cook the seed. Any seed that does not swell should be carefully pricked with a needle, taking care not to damage the embryo, and re-soaked for a further 24 hours. Germination can be slow and erratic but is usually within 4 – 9 weeks or more at 13°c if the seed is treated or sown fresh. As soon as it is large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for their first winter, planting them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts.
Medicinal Uses:
The entire plant is used in Tibetan medicine, it is said to have a sweet taste and a heating potency. Antihydrotic, diuretic, emmenagogue and tonic, it is used in the treatment of body weakness from prolonged illness, renal inflammation from lack of exercise, lack of appetite, excessive perspiration (especially when asleep), diabetes, boils/sores, diarrhoea, irregular menses and vaginal/seminal discharge.
Known Hazards: Many members of this genus contain toxic glycosides. All species with edible seedpods can be distinguished by their fleshy round or oval seedpod that looks somewhat like a greengage. A number of species can also accumulate toxic levels of selenium when grown in soils that are relatively rich in that element.
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=Astragalus+floridus
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Astragalus

Astragalus crassicarpus

Botanical Name : Astragalus crassicarpus
Family:Fabaceae
Kind:Astragalus
Reign:Plantae
Subkingdom:Tracheobionta
Division:Magnoliophyta
Class:Magnoliopsida
Subclass:Rosidae
Order:Fabales

Synonyms : A. caryocarpus. Ker-Gawl. A. mexicanus. A. succulentus. Geoprumnon succulentum.

Common Names: Ground Plum, Groundplum milkvetch

Habitat :Astragalus crassicarpus is native Western N. AmericaEastern Rocky mountains and eastward to Nebraska.It grows on prairies and plains.
Description:
Astragalus crassicarpus is a perennial herb growing to 0.5 m (1ft 8in). It’s leaves are compound in groups of 15 to 29. Leaflets are about 1/3 to ½ inch long, less than ¼ inch wide, generally elliptic with a pointed or blunt tip, hairy to varying degrees on both sides. Stems are hairy, sprawling along the ground and rising at the tip end (decumbent).

Racemes of 5 to 15 pea-shaped flowers. Flowers are about ¾ inch long with an erect broad egg-shaped upper petal, notched at the tip, and 2 small lower petals that are mostly horizontal. The tubular calyx holding the flower is purple tinged with several prong-like appendages at the tip end. Flower color ranges from pinkish purple to lavender to blue-violet. A plant has several to many clusters on stalks up to 4 inches long arising from the leaf axils.

The fruit is a smooth round pod ½ to 1 inch across that ripens to purple, and resembles a plum. Inside are 1/8-inch, somewhat kidney shaped black seeds.

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The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees, lepidoptera.It can fix Nitrogen.
Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry soil.
Cultivation:
Requires a dry well-drained soil in a sunny position. Plants are intolerant of root disturbance and are best planted in their final positions whilst still small. The stems are sometimes prostrate. This species is somewhat polymorphic and is separated into a number of distinct species by some botanists. The form sometimes known as A. mexicanus has larger seedpods than the type, up to 35mm in diameter. This species has a symbiotic relationship with certain soil bacteria, these bacteria form nodules on the roots and fix atmospheric nitrogen. Some of this nitrogen is utilized by the growing plant but some can also be used by other plants growing nearby. Many members of this genus can be difficult to grow, this may be due partly to a lack of their specific bacterial associations in the soil.

Propagation:
Seed – best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame. A period of cold stratification may help stored seed to germinate. Stored seed, and perhaps also fresh seed, should be pre-soaked for 24 hours in hot water before sowing – but make sure that you do not cook the seed. Any seed that does not swell should be carefully pricked with a needle, taking care not to damage the embryo, and re-soaked for a further 24 hours. Germination can be slow and erratic but is usually within 4 – 9 weeks or more at 13°c if the seed is treated or sown fresh. As soon as it is large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for their first winter, planting them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts.

Edible Uses:
The thick fleshy unripe seedpods, which resemble green plums, are eaten raw or cooked. They are highly esteemed. The pods are about 25mm in diameter.
Medicinal Uses:
A compound decoction or infusion of the root has been used to treat fits and convulsions and has been used on bleeding wounds. It has also been taken or used externally as a stimulant.

Known Hazards: Many members of this genus contain toxic glycosides. All species with edible seedpods can be distinguished by their fleshy round or oval seedpod that looks somewhat like a greengage. A number of species can also accumulate toxic levels of selenium when grown in soils that are relatively rich in that element.
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://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Astragalus_crassicarpus
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Astragalus+crassicarpus
https://www.minnesotawildflowers.info/flower/ground-plum

Elaeagnus multiflora ovata

Botanical Name : Elaeagnus multiflora ovata
Family: Elaeagnaceae
Genus: Elaeagnus
Species: E. multiflora
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Rosales

Synonyms : Elaeagnus longipes

Common Names : Goumi, Gumi, Natsugumi, or Cherry silverberry

Habitat : Elaeagnus multiflora ovata is native to E. Asia – China and Japan. It grows on the thickets and thin woods in hills and on lowland, at elevations of 600 – 1800 metres.

Description:
Elaeagnus multiflora ovata is a deciduous or semi-evergreen shrub or small tree growing to 2-8 m tall, with a trunk up to 30 cm diameter with dark brown bark.
The shoots are densely covered in minute red-brown scales. The leaves are ovate to elliptic, 3-10 cm long and 2-5 cm broad, green above, and silvery to orange-brown below with dense small scales.The flowers are solitary or in pairs in the leaf axils, fragrant, with a four-lobed pale yellowish-white corolla 1.5 cm long; flowering is in mid-spring and the seeds ripen in July.

The fruit is round to oval drupe 1 cm long, silvery-scaled orange, ripening red dotted with silver or brown, pendulous on a 2-3 cm peduncle. When ripe in mid- to late summer, the fruit is juicy and edible, with a sweet but astringent taste somewhat similar to that of rhubarb. The skin of the fruit is thin and fragile, making it difficult to transport, thus reducing its viability as a food crop.

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It is hardy to zone (UK) 6 and is not frost tender. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees.It can fix Nitrogen.
Cultivation :
An easily grown plant, it succeeds in most soils that are well-drained. Prefers a soil that is only moderately fertile, succeeding in poor soils and in dry soils. Prefers a light sandy loam and a sunny position but succeeds in light shade. Very drought and wind resistant. Tolerates atmospheric pollution. Plants are hardy to about -20°c, but the roots are hardy to -30°c (although top growth will be killed at this temperature). Cultivated for its edible fruit in Japan, there are some named varieties. Plants can crop in 4 years from cuttings. They bear heavily in Britain. The fruit is well hidden in the shrub and is quite difficult to harvest without damaging the plant. This sub-species produces brown fruits on long stalks, would this be any easier to harvest? This species is notably resistant to honey fungus. Birds love the fruits. There is some confusion over the correct name for this species. In the on-line version of the Flora of Japan it is referred to as Elaeagnus montana ovata. This species has a symbiotic relationship with certain soil bacteria, these bacteria form nodules on the roots and fix atmospheric nitrogen. Some of this nitrogen is utilized by the growing plant but some can also be used by other plants growing nearby. An excellent companion plant, when grown in orchards it can increase yields from the fruit trees by up to 10%. The small flowers are deliciously scented, their aroma pervading the garden on calm days.

Propagation :
Seed – best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame. It should germinate in late winter or early spring, though it may take 18 months[K]. Stored seed can be very slow to germinate, often taking more than 18 months. A warm stratification for 4 weeks followed by 12 weeks cold stratification can help[98]. The seed usually (eventually) germinates quite well. Prick out the seedlings into individual pot as soon as they are large enough to handle and plant out when they are at least 15cm tall. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, 7 – 10cm with a heel, July/August in a frame. Good percentage. Cuttings of mature wood of the current year’s growth, 10 – 12cm with a heel, November in a frame. Leave for 12 months. Fair to good percentage. Layering in September/October. Takes 12 months.
Edible Uses :
Edible Parts: Fruit; Seed.

Fruit – raw or cooked. Pleasantly acid when ripe, they are usually made into pies, preserves etc. Quite fiddly and difficult to pick without breaking the young shoots, this sub-species carries the fruit on longer stalks than the species and might therefore be easier to pick. The fruit must be fully ripe before it can be enjoyed raw, if even slightly under-ripe it will be quite astringent. The fruit is about 10mm long and contains a single large seed. Seed – raw or cooked. It can be eaten with the fruit though the seed case is rather fibrous.
Medicinal Uses:

Cancer.

The fruit of many members of this genus is a very rich source of vitamins and minerals, especially in vitamins A, C and E, flavanoids and other bio-active compounds. It is also a fairly good source of essential fatty acids, which is fairly unusual for a fruit. It is being investigated as a food that is capable of reducing the incidence of cancer and also as a means of halting or reversing the growth of cancers.
Other Uses: ……Hedge; Rootstock..….Plants can be grown as a hedge in exposed positions, tolerating maritime exposure. A hedge in a very exposed position at Rosewarne in N. Cornwall was 3.5 metres tall in 1989[K]. Often used as a rootstock for evergreen species that are hard to grow from cuttings. It frequently sprouts from the base and can out-compete the scion.
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/Elaeagnus_multiflora
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Elaeagnus+multiflora+ovata