Tag Archives: North America

Allium suaveolens

 

Botanical Name: Allium suaveolens
Family : Amaryllidaceae
Genus : Allium
Species: Allium suaveolens
Domain:Eukaryotic
Kingdom: Plantae
Division:Tracheophyta
Class: Liliopsida
Order:Asparagales

Synonyms:
*Endotis pyrenaica Raf.
*Allium suaveolens subsp. serotinum
*Allium suaveolens was. appendiculatum
*Allium serotinum Lapeyr.
*Allium appendiculatum Ramond ex Pers.

Habitat: Allium suaveolens is native to S. and C. Europe. It grows on damp meadows and moors.

Description:
Allium suaveolens is an evergreen bulb growing to 0.5 m (1ft 8in). It is in leaf 12-Jan It is in flower from Jul to August.

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The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees, 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:
An easily grown plant, it prefers a sunny position in a light well-drained soil. Succeeds in heavy soils and in light shade. The bulbs should be planted fairly deeply. Closely related to A. senescens, differing mainly in having keeled leaves. It has the same uses as that species. Grows well with most plants, especially roses, carrots, beet and chamomile, but it inhibits the growth of legumes. This plant is a bad companion for alfalfa, each species negatively affecting the other. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer.
Propagation:
Seed – sow spring in a cold frame. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle – if you want to produce clumps more quickly then put three plants in each pot. Grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter and plant them out into their permanent positions in spring once they are growing vigorously and are large enough. Division in spring. Very easy, the plants divide successfully at any time in the growing season and the divisions can be planted straight out into their permanent positions if required.

Edible Uses:
Bulb – raw or cooked. Leaves – raw or cooked. Flowers – raw. Used as a garnish on salads.

Medicinal Uses:
Although no specific mention of medicinal uses has been seen for this species, members of this genus are in general very healthy additions to the diet. They contain sulphur compounds (which give them their onion flavour) and when added to the diet on a regular basis they help reduce blood cholesterol levels, act as a tonic to the digestive system and also tonify the circulatory system.
Other Uses: Repellent.…..The juice of the plant is used as a moth repellent. The whole plant is said to repel insects and moles.

Known Hazards: Although no individual reports regarding this species have been seen, there have been cases of poisoning caused by the consumption, in large quantities and by some mammals, of certain members of this genus. Dogs seem to be particularly susceptible.

Disclaimer: This information is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advise or help. It is always best to consult with a Physician about serious health concerns. This information is in no way intended to diagnose or prescribe remedies.This is purely for educational purpose.

Resources:
https://sv.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allium_suaveolens
http://www.pfaf.org/User/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Allium+suaveolens

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Potentilla erecta

Botanical Name: Potentilla erecta
Family: Rosaceae
Genus: Potentilla
Species: P. erecta
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Rosales

Synonyms: Tormentilla erecta, Potentilla laeta, Potentilla tormentilla

Common Names: Tormentil, Erect cinquefoil, Rough-Fruited Cinquefoil, Erect cinquefoil

Habitat :Potentilla erecta is native to Europe, including Britain, from Scandanavia south and east to N. Africa, W. Asia, Siberia. It grows on grassland, heath, bog, fens, mountain tops and open woods, especially in light acid soils.

Description:
Potentilla erecta is a low, clump-forming perennial plant with slender, procumbent to arcuately upright stalks, growing 10–30 centimetres (3.9–11.8 in) tall and with non-rooting runners. It grows wild predominantly in Scandinavia, Europe, and western Asia mostly on acid soils in a wide variety of habitats, such as mountains, heaths, meadows, sandy soils and dunes.

This plant is flowering from May to August/September. There is one yellow, 7–11 millimetres (0.28–0.43 in) wide flower, growing at the tip of a long stalk. There are almost always four notched petals, each with a length between 3 and 6 mm. Four petals are rather uncommon in the rose family. The petals are somewhat longer than the sepals. There are 20–25 stamens.

The radical leaves have a long petiole, while the leaves on the flowering stalks are usually sessile or with short petioles. The glossy leaves are alternate, ternate, consisting of three obovate leaflets with serrate margins. The paired stipules are leaflike and palmately lobed.
There are 2–8 dry, inedible fruits.

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The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees, flies, beetles, lepidoptera.The plant is self-fertile.
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:
Easily grown in a well-drained loam, preferring a position in full sun but tolerating shade. Prefers a light acid soil, disliking heavy and strongly calcareous soils. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer.
Propagation:
Seed – sow early spring or autumn in a cold frame. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Division in spring. Larger divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions. We have found that it is better to pot up the smaller divisions and grow them on in light shade in a cold frame until they are well established before planting them out in late spring or early summer.

Edible Uses: Tea.
The roots are extremely rich in tannin, long boiling converts this into a gum and it can then be eaten. An emergency food, it is only eaten when all else fails. A tea is made from the rhizomes.

Medicinal Uses:

Antibiotic; Antidiarrhoeal; Astringent; Enuresis; Haemostatic; Hypoglycaemic; Odontalgic.

Containing more tannin than oak bark, all parts of tormentil are strongly astringent, finding use wherever that action is required. This plant is considered to be one of the safest native astringents and it is widely used in herbal medicine in the treatment of diarrhoea, dysentery, sore throats etc. The whole plant, and especially the root, is antibiotic, strongly astringent, haemostatic and hypoglycaemic. It is used in the treatment of diarrhoea, dysentery, irritable bowel syndrome, colitis, ulcerative colitis etc. Externally, the plant makes a good styptic for cuts etc., and a strongly made decoction has been recommended as a wash for mouth ulcers, infected gums, piles and inflamed eyes. Extracts are used to treat chapping of the anus and cracked nipples. The plant’s effectiveness as a toothache remedy is undeniable and it has also been of benefit in treating bed-wetting by children.
Other Uses:
Cosmetic; Dye; Tannin.

A red dye is obtained from the roots. The plant, and especially the root, is rich in tannin. It s used cosmetically as a compress to tone up flabby skin. The root contains up to 20% tannin.
Known Hazards : Gastrointestinal symptoms if doses over 1g. Interferes with iron absorption & other minerals when taken internally. Avoid if inflammatory or ulcerative bowel disease. Avoid if pregnant or lactating.

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/Potentilla_erecta
http://www.pfaf.org/User/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Potentilla+erecta

Myrica californica

Botanical Name: Myrica californica
Family: Myricaceae
Genus: Myrica
Species: M. californica
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Fagales

Synonyms: Gale californica

Common Names: California bayberry, California wax myrtle, California Barberry

Habitat : Myrica californica is native to the Pacific Ocean coast of North America from Vancouver Island south to California as far south as the Long Beach area. It grows in the Ocean sand dunes and moist hill sides near the coast, usually on acid soils and tolerating poorly drained soils.

Description:
Myrica californica is an evergreen Shrub growing to 4 m (13ft 1in) at a medium rate. It has serrated, sticky green leaves 4-13 cm long and 0.7-3 cm broad, which emit a spicy scent on warm days. It is in leaf 12-Jan It is in flower in May, and the seeds ripen from Sep to October. The flower’s inflorescence is arranged in a spike 0.6-3 cm long, in range of colors from green to red. The fruit is a wrinkled purple berry 4-6.5 mm diameter, with a waxy coating, hence the common name wax myrtle. This species has root nodules containing nitrogen-fixing microorganisms, allowing it to grow in relatively poor soils.

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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 Wind.It can fix Nitrogen.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid and neutral soils and can grow in very acid soils.
It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil. The plant can tolerates strong winds but not maritime exposure.
Cultivation:
Landscape Uses:Border, Hedge, Screen, Seashore, Specimen. Prefers a moist soil. Grows well in an open position in a well-drained soil in sun or light shade. Thrives in any ordinary garden soil according to one report whilst another says that it thrives in an acid soil. Prefers a lime-free loamy or peaty soil. Plants can be cut back to the ground in severe winters in many parts of Britain, but they are well suited to the milder parts of the country where they are fast-growing and produce fruit within 5 years from seed. They succeed and fruit well on a south facing wall at Kew. Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus. The fruit is covered with a deposit of wax that has a balsamic odour. Many species in this genus have a symbiotic relationship with certain soil micro-organisms, these form nodules on the roots of the plants 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. Special Features:Attracts birds, North American native, Fragrant foliage, Attracts butterflies, Inconspicuous flowers or blooms.
Propagation:
Seed – best sown as soon as it is ripe in the autumn in a cold frame. Stored seed germinates more freely if given a 3 month cold stratification and then sown in a cold frame. Germination is usually good. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and grow them on in the cold frame for the first winter. Plant out in late spring or early summer. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, 5 – 8cm with a heel, July/August in a frame. Pot up and overwinter in a cold frame then plant out in late spring or early summer. Fair to good percentage. Layering in spring

Edible Uses: Fruit – raw or cooked. The fruit is about 6mm in diameter with a large seed. There is very little edible flesh and the flavour of this is poor.

Medicinal Uses:  The bark and root bark is used in the treatment of gastrointestinal disorders and infections.
Other Uses:
Dye; Wax; Wood.

A wax covering on the fruit is extracted by scalding the fruit with boiling water and immersing them for a few minutes, the wax floats to the surface and is then skimmed off. The fruit is then boiled in water to extract the wax from the pulp and once more the wax is skimmed off. It is then strained through a muslin cloth and can be used to make aromatic candles. Candles made from this wax are quite brittle but are less greasy in warm weather. They are slightly aromatic and do not smoke when put out, making them much more pleasant to use that wax or tallow candles. The wax is also used in making soaps. To date (07/12/95) plants growing on our Cornish trial grounds have fruited freely but have not produced much wax. They produced somewhat more after the hot summer of 1995, but there was still not enough to make extraction worthwhile. A grey-brown and a maroon-purple dye are obtained from the fresh or dried berries. Wood – heavy, very hard, strong, brittle, close grained
Known Hazards: Although no reports of toxicity have been seen for this species, there is a report for some members of this genus that some of the constituents of the wax might be carcinogenic.

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/Myrica_californica
http://www.pfaf.org/user/plant.aspx?LatinName=Myrica+californica

Iris missouriensis

Botanical Name: Iris missouriensis
Family: Iridaceae
Subfamily: Iridoideae
Tribe: Irideae
Genus: Iris
Subgenus: Limniris
Series: Longipetalae
Species: I. missouriensis
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Asparagales

Synonyms:
*Iris arizonica Dykes
*Iris haematophylla var. valametica Herb. ex Hook.
*Iris longipetala var. montana Baker
*Iris missouriensis f. alba H.St.John
*Iris missouriensis var. albiflora Cockerell
*Iris missouriensis f. angustispatha R.C.Foster
*Iris missouriensis var. arizonica (Dykes) R.C.Foster
*Iris missouriensis var. pelogonus (Goodd.) R.C.Foster
*Iris missuriensis M.Martens
*Iris montana Nutt. ex Dykes
*Iris pariensis S.L.Welsh
*Iris pelogonus Goodd.
*Iris tolmieana Herb.
*Limniris missouriensis (Nutt.) Rodion.

Common Names: Rocky Mountain Iris

Habitat : Iris missouriensis is native to native to western North America. Its distribution is varied; it grows at high elevations in mountains and alpine meadows and all the way down to sea level in coastal hills.

Description:
Iris missouriensis is an erect herbaceous rhizomatous perennial  flowering plant .It is  20 to 40 cm high, with leafless unbranched scapes (flowering stems) and linear basal leaves, 5 to 10 mm wide, similar in height to the scapes. The inflorescence usually consists of one or two flowers, exceptionally three or four. Each flower has three light to dark blue, spreading or reflexed sepals lined with purple and three smaller upright blue petals.
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.
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 or wet soil.

Cultivation:
Requires a moist soil, growing well in a moist border, but intolerant of stagnant water. Easily grown in a sunny position so long as the soil is wet in the spring. A polymorphic species. 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. Another report says that it is best done in spring or early autumn. 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.

Edible Uses:…..The roasted seed is a coffee substitute.

Medicinal Uses:

Analgesic; Diuretic; Emetic; Odontalgic; Poultice; Salve; Stomachic.

Rocky Mountain iris was employed medicinally by several native North American Indian tribes who used it to treat various complaints, but especially as an external application for skin problems. It was for a time an officinal American medicinal plant, but is little, if at all, used in modern herbalism. The root is emetic and odontalgic. An infusion has been used in the treatment of kidney and bladder complaints, stomach aches etc. The pulped root is placed in the tooth cavity or on the gum in order to bring relief from toothache. A decoction of the root has been used as ear drops to treat earaches. A poultice of the mashed roots has been applied to rheumatic joints and also used as a salve on venereal sores. Caution is advised in the use of this plant, see the notes above on toxicity. A paste of the ripe seeds has been used as a dressing on burns.

Some Plateau Indian tribes used the roots to treat toothache.
The Navajo used a decoction of this plant as an emetic.The Zuni apply a poultice of chewed root to increase strength of newborns and infants.
This iris is listed as a weed in some areas, particularly in agricultural California. It is bitter and distasteful to livestock and heavy growths of the plant are a nuisance in pasture land. Heavy grazing in an area promotes the growth of this hardy iris.

Other Uses: … Dye….Yields a green dye (part of plant used is not specified).

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_missouriensis
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iris_missouriensis

Solanum scabrum

Botanical Name: Solanum scabrum
Family: Solanaceae
Genus: Solanum
Species: S. scabrum
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Solanales

Synonyms: S. intrusum. S. melanocerasum. All. S. scabrum.

Common Name: Garden Huckleberry

Habitat: The origin of the species is uncertain, although Linnaeus attributed it to Africa, but it also occurs in North America, and is naturalized in many countries. In Africa it is cultivated as a leaf vegetable and for dye from the berries. It grows in cultivated bed.

Description:
Solanum scabrum is an annual or short-lived perennial herb to 1 m tall, hairless or sparsely hairy. The leaves are usually ovate, 7–12 cm long and 5–8 cm wide, with petioles 1.5–7 cm long. The inflorescence is simple or sometimes branched with 9–12 flowers. The white corolla is stellate, 15–20 mm diam., and sometimes tinged purple and with yellow/green basal star. The berries are globular, 10–17 mm diam., purple-black. The seeds are 1.8–2.2 mm long, pale or stained purple.

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It is in flower from Jul to September, 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 and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers moist soil.

Cultivation:
Succeeds in most soils. Dislikes shade. Caterpillars and slugs are particularly fond of this plant and can totally destroy it. This is a cultivated form of S. nigrum, grown for its edible fruit. There is at least one named form. See notes about possible toxicity at the top of this page. There is some disagreement among taxonomists as to the correct name of this plant. It is also listed as S. melanocerasum. Grows well with clover. Does not grow well with wormwood or white mustard and, when these plants are growing Closely related to S. nigra, they increase its content of toxic alkaloids.
Propagation:
Seed – sow spring in situ. The seed can also be sown in a greenhouse during the spring if required since this will normally produce larger crops of fruit. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and plant out in late spring.
Edible Uses:
Edible Parts: Fruit; Leaves.

Solanum scabrum is grown as an edible leaf crop in Africa. It is the most intensively cultivated species for leaf cropping within the Solanum nigrum complex, and as such has undergone genetic selection by farmers for leaf size and other characteristics.

Fruit – cooked.. Used in preserves, jams and pies. A pleasant musky taste. Only the fully ripe fruits should be used, the unripe fruits contain the toxin solanine. Often cooked with some baking soda first in order to remove any bitterness. The fruit contains about 2.5% protein, 0.6% fat, 5.6% carbohydrate, 1.2% ash. The fruit is up to 12mm in diameter. Young leaves and new shoots – raw or cooked as a potherb or added to soups.

Medicinal Uses:

Antiperiodic; Antiphlogistic; Diaphoretic; Diuretic; Febrifuge; Narcotic; Purgative.

The whole plant is antiperiodic, antiphlogistic, diaphoretic, diuretic, emollient, febrifuge, narcotic, purgative and sedative. It is harvested in the autumn when both flowers and fruit are upon the plant, and is dried for later use. Use with caution, see notes above on toxicity. The leaves, stems and roots are used in the treatment of cancerous sores, leucoderma and wounds. Extracts of the plant are analgesic, antispasmodic, anti-inflammatory and vasodilator. The plant has been used in the manufacture of locally analgesic ointments and the juice of the fruit has been used as an analgesic for toothaches.

Other Uses:
Dye:
In Africa a stocky form of Solanum scabrum is cultivated as a dye crop using the ripe berries.

Known Hazards: There is a lot of disagreement over whether or not the leaves or fruit of this plant are poisonous. Views vary from relatively poisonous to perfectly safe to eat. The plant is cultivated as a food crop, both for its fruit and its leaves, in some parts of the world and it is probably true to say that toxicity can vary considerably according to where the plant is grown and the cultivar that is being grown. The unripe fruit contains the highest concentration of toxins
Resources:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solanum_scabrum
http://www.pfaf.org/user/plant.aspx?LatinName=Solanum+scabrum