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Salsola Kali

Botanical Name: Salsola Kali
Family: Chenopodiaceae
Genus: Salsola
Species: S. kali
Kingdom: Plantae
Phylum: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Caryophyllales

Common Names: Prickly Glasswort, Russian thistle, Prickly saltwort or Prickly Russian thistle,

Habitat: Salsola Kali is native to Russia and Siberia. It grows in Coastal Europe, including Britain, from Scandanavia south and east to N. Africa, Asia and N. AmericaIt is found in disturbed areas such as roadsides, trails, abandoned fields, along streams and lakes, and over-grazed ranges and pastures. (Non-saline sandy beaches, avoiding acid soils. It is usually found on dry soils)

Edible Uses:
Young leaves and stems – raw or cooked. An excellent food with a crunchy tender texture. The leaves can be used as a spinach substitute or added in small quantities to salads. Seed – cooked. It can be ground into a meal and used as a gruel, thickener in soups etc or added to cereal flours when making bread etc[85]. The seed is small and hard to collect any quantity.
Description:
The Prickly Glasswort (Salsola Kali, Linn.) has a thick, round, brittle stem, with few, rigid leaves of a bluish-green colour and small, yellow flowers.
Prevalence in the semi-desert range of western states is due to its drought tolerance and long-distance method of seed dispersal…….CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES
Mature plants grow 31-152 cm high and are bushy, dense annuals. Young plants have stems with red or purple stripes. The 1.3 – 6.4 cm long leaves are alternate, thread-like, cylindrical or awl-shaped with pointed tips. The flowers are solitary, small and greenish to white in color and lack petals. Papery spine-tipped bracts are present at the base of each flower. Russian thistle typically blooms from July to October. However, this plant is indeterminate and continues to flower and produce seed until temperatures drop below -3.9° C.

Medicinal Uses:
Cathartic; Diuretic; Emmenagogue; Stimulant; Vermifuge.

The juice of the fresh plant is an excellent diuretic. The seedpods can also be used. Salsolin, one of the constituents of the plant, has been used to regulate the blood pressure. It is said to resemble papaverine in its effect on vasoconstriction and hydrastine in its effect on the smooth muscles of the uterus. Reported to be cathartic, diuretic, emmenagogue, stimulant, and vermifuge, the plant is a folk remedy for dropsy and excrescences.

The juice of the fresh plant was said to be an excellent diuretic, the twisted seed-vessels having the same virtue and being given in infusion.

Other Uses:
Biomass; Cleanser; Potash.

The ashes of the burnt plant are used for making glass and soap. At one time large quantities of the ashes were imported into Britain for this purpose, but nowadays a chemical process using salt is employed. The ashes can also be used as a cleaner for fabrics. As a low-water-use plant, germinating quickly on minimally disturbed soils, and relatively free of diseases and parasites, this has been suggested as a fuel source for arid lands. Yields of around 3 tonnes per hectare of plant material have been achieved.
Known Hazards: The plant contains up to 5% oxalic acid, so it should only be used in moderation. Oxalic acid can lock up certain of the nutrients in food and, if eaten in excess, can lead to nutritional deficiencies. It is, however, perfectly safe in small amounts and its acid taste adds a nice flavour to salads. Cooking the plant will reduce the quantity of oxalic acid. People with a tendency to rheumatism, arthritis, gout, kidney stones and hyperacidity should take especial caution if including this plant in their diet since it can aggravate their condition
Resources:
http://wiki.bugwood.org/Salsola_kali
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salsola_kali
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Salsola+kali

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Broom Moss

Botanical Name :Dicranum scoparium
Family: Dicranaceae
Genus: Dicranum
Species: D. scoparium
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Bryophyta
Class: Bryopsida
Subclass: Dicranidae
Order: Dicranales

Common Name :Broom Moss

Habitat :Broom Moss is native to North America, including the Great Lakes region.Grows on  Soil, humus, humus over rock, decaying stumps and logs, tree bases in dry to mesic woodlands.

Description:
Plants in loose to dense tufts, light to dark green, glossy to sometimes dull. Stems 2-10 cm, tomentose with white to brown rhizoids. Leaves very variable, usually falcate-secund, rarely straight and erect, slightly contorted and crisped when dry, sometimes slightly rugose or undulate, (4-)5-8.5(-15) × 0.8-1.8 mm, concave proximally, keeled above, lanceolate, apex acute to somewhat obtuse; margins strongly serrate in the distal 1/3 or rarely slightly serrulate; laminae 1-stratose; costa percurrent, excurrent, or ending before apex, 1/10-1/5 the width of the leaves at base, usually with 2-4 toothed ridges above on abaxial surface, with a row of guide cells, two thin stereid bands, adaxial epidermal layer of cells not differentiated, the abaxial layer interrupted by several enlarged cells that form part of the abaxial ridge, not extending to the apices; cell walls between lamina cells not bulging; leaf cells smooth; alar cells 2-stratose, well- differentiated, sometimes extending to costa; proximal laminal cells linear-rectangular, pitted, (25-)47-100(-132) × (5-)7-12(-13) µm; distal laminal cells shorter, broad, sinuose, pitted, (11-)27-43(-53) × (5-)8-12(-20) µm

Click to see the pictures…..…(01)......(1)……....(2).……....(3).…………………

Capsules mature spring.

Medicinal Uses:
The CH2Cl2 extract of Dicranum scoparium was found to possess pronounced antimicrobial activity against Bacillus cereus, Bacillus stearothermophilus, Bacillus subtilis, Staphylococcus aureus, and Escherichia coli.

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://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dicranum_scoparium
http://www.efloras.org/florataxon.aspx?flora_id=1&taxon_id=200000987
http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=DISC71&photoID=disc71_005_ahp.jpg
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_AB.htm

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