Tag Archives: Seed

Digitaria sanguinalis

 

…Botanical Name : Digitaria sanguinalis
Family: Poaceae
Subfamily: Panicoideae
Genus: Digitaria
Species: D. sanguinalis
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Poales

Synonyms: Panicum sanguinale Linnaeus, Syntherisma sanguinale (Linnaeus) Dulac

Common Names: Crabgrass, hairy crabgrass or large crabgrass

Habitat :Grows throughout the world. It is found  on waste places.

Description & Uses;
It is an annual grass with an inflorescence of up to nine very long, very thin, radiating branches atop its stems. Each branch is lined with pairs of very tiny spikelets. The inflorescences may be reddish or purplish.

CLICK TO SEE…>….(01).....(1).…...(.2).…….…(3)..…….(4).…..…(5)…..
The seeds are edible and have been used as a grain in Germany and especially Poland, where it is sometimes cultivated.   This has earned it the name Polish Millet, and it was brought to the United States by some emigrants to serve as hand-foraged grain. The grass is also highly nutritious, especially before the plant exhausts itself producing seed. It is frequently sown in fields to provide graze for animals, or clipped and bundled as hay. Compared to other grasses, it has a relatively high protein percentage. Farmers will sometimes till patches in their pastures in the late spring, with the intent of encouraging crabgrass seed.

For human consumption, crabgrass necessarily must be harvested by hand, because it produces grain throughout summer, rather than simultaneously. Machine harvesting would require monthly passes, and even then much of the seed would go to waste. This said, crabgrass produces an exceptionally high amount of grain, it smothers other weeds, it acts as its own mulch, and it can survive both heat and drought. Its adaptability makes it a candidate for environmental small-farming.

Its usefulness to nineteenth-century homesteaders, however, has made its seed widespread, and today is considered an unattractive nuisance. Crabgrass takes advantage of low fertility and drought, since this tends to weaken other grasses. It is difficult to kill, as it will regenerate, and chemicals will likely harm surrounding grasses. The most efficient means of control is to pull patches, and keep the rest of the lawn watered and mowed at a height of two-three inches.

Cultivation:
Prefers a sandy soil. Requires a warm sheltered position. This species is occasionally cultivated, especially in Poland, for its edible seed. Special Features: Invasive.

Propagation :
Seed – best sown in situ in the spring. Only just cover the seed.

Medicinal Uses:
A decoction of the plant is used in the treatment of gonorrhea. A folk remedy for cataracts and debility, it is also said to be emetic.

Other Uses: A fibre obtained from the plant is used in making paper.

Known Hazards : There is a report that the leaves might be cyanogenic.

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/Digitaria_sanguinalis
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_C.htm
http://www.wnmu.edu/academic/nspages/gilaflora/digitaria_sanguinalis.html

Dendranthema grandiflorum

Botanical Name : Dendranthema grandiflorum
Family : Asteraceae or Compositae
Genus: Dendranthema

Synonyms : Chrysanthemum x morifolium. Ramat. C. sinense
Common name : Florist’s daisy ,Chrysanthemum

Other names › Chrysanthemum hortorum
› Chrysanthemum hortorum hort.
› Chrysanthemum x morifolium
› Chrysanthemum x morifolium Ramat.
› Dendranthema grandiflora

Habitat :Native to China & Japan grows plenty in Southeast Asia.

Description:
Dendranthema x grandiflorum is a PERENNIAL growing to 1.5 m (5ft).
It is hardy to zone 4. It is in flower from Aug to October. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.

click to see the pictures

The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils.The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils..It cannot grow in the shade.It requires moist soil.

Cultivation:
Succeeds in most well-drained fertile soils in a sunny position. This species is not fully hardy in Britain, many of its cultivars requiring greenhouse protection in the colder areas of the country. The chrysanthemum is widely cultivated as an ornamental flowering plant, there are many named varieties. It is also occasionally grown in the Orient for its edible leaves, a number of cultivars have been developed with leaves that are low in bitterness. It has been proposed (1999) to restore this species to Chrysanthemum as C. x morifolium Ramat. since the plant is so widely known under this name.

Propagation
Seed – sow spring to early summer in a greenhouse and only just cover the seed. It usually germinates in 10 – 18 days at 15°c but if it does not germinate within 4 weeks then try chilling the seed for 3 weeks in the salad compartment of a fridge[164]. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in the summer. This is a hybrid species and so will not breed true from seed. Division in spring. 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
Edible Parts: Flowers;  Leaves;  Tea.

The flower heads or petals are parboiled and served as a salad with tofu and seasoned with vinegar or soya sauce. They can also be prepared as tempura, pickled, dried or added to soups. The petals contain about 1.9% protein, 0.9% fat, 5.3% carbohydrate, 0.7% ash. Leaves – cooked . Used as fritters, they are aromatic. Some varieties have been selected for their low bitterness. An aromatic tea is made from the leaves. A tangy aromatic tea is made from the flowers or flower petals[179]. For a sweeter tea only the petals are used.

Medicinal Uses :
Antibacterial;  Antifungal;  CarminativeDepurativeDiaphoreticFebrifuge;  Ophthalmic;  Refrigerant;  Sedative.

Chrysanthemum flowers, known in China as Ju Hua, are a bitter aromatic herb that has been used for thousands of years in Chinese medicine. The flower heads are drunk as a refreshing tisane and are used to improve vision, soothe sore eyes, relieve headaches, counter infections etc. They are antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, carminative, depurative, diaphoretic, febrifuge, ophthalmic, refrigerant and sedative. Taken internally they dilate the coronary artery, thus increasing the flow of blood to the heart, and so are used in the treatment of hypertension, coronary heart diseases and angina. The flowers are harvested when fully open in the autumn and are dried for later use. In China they are steamed before being dried to make them less bitter. The leaf juice is smeared onto wounds.

Chinese Medicine: Disperses wind and clears heat: for wind-heat patterns with fever and headache; Clears the Liver and the eyes: for either wind-heat in the Liver channel manifested in red, painful, dry eyes or excessive tearing, or yin deficiency of the Kidneys and Liver with such symptoms as spots in front of the eyes, blurry vision, or dizziness; Calms the Liver and extinguishes wind: for such symptoms as dizziness, headache, and deafness due to ascendant Liver yang.  The ability of white chrysanthemum to nourish the Liver and clear the eyes is somewhat superior to the other varieties.  It is also known as sweet chrysanthemum (gan ju hua). This variety is often used for diminished vision due to Liver and Kidney yin deficiency.  Yellow chrysanthemum (huang ju hua) has a greater wind-heat dispersing capacity than do the other varieties.  It is most often used in treating eye redness and headache due to externally-contracted wind-heat.  Research has demonstrated that it is a valuable remedy for high blood pressure.

Other Uses : Plants have been grown indoors in pots in order to help remove toxins from the atmosphere. It is especially good at removing chemical vapours, especially formaldehyde, benzene and ammonia.

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.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Dendranthema%20x%20grandiflorum
http://www.uniprot.org/taxonomy/41568
http://www.ars-grin.gov/cgi-bin/npgs/html/taxon.pl?400932
http://www.globinmed.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=79097:dendranthema-x-grandiflorum-ramat-kitam&catid=368:d

http://www.hear.org/starr/images/image/?q=080117-1750&o=plants

Enhanced by Zemanta

Sutherlandia frutescens

 

Botanical Name : Sutherlandia frutescens
Family: Fabaceae
Genus: Sutherlandia
Species: S. frutescens
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Fabales

Synonyms. : Colutea frutescens L., Lessertia frutescens (L.) Goldblatt & J.C.Manning

Common Name :Cancer bush, Balloon pea, Sutherlandia,Wildegansie,Eendjies, Gansiekeur

Habitat :Sutherlandia frutescens occurs naturally throughout the dry parts of southern Africa, in Western Cape and up the west coast as far north as Namibia and into Botswana, and in the western Karoo to Eastern Cape. It shows remarkable variation within its distribution.

Description:
Sutherlandia is an attractive small, soft wooded shrublet, 0.5 to 1 m in height. The leaves are pinnately compound . The leaflets are 4–10 mm long, grey-green in colour, giving the bush a silvery appearance. They have a very bitter taste.

CLICK  &  SEE  THE  PICTURES 

The flowers are orange-red, up to 35 mm long, and are carried in short racemes in the leaf axils at the tips of the branches in spring to mid-summer (September – December).The flowers are not typical ‘pea’ flowers, the wing petals are very small and are concealed in the calyx, and the standard petal is much shorter than the keel.

The fruit is a large, bladder-like, papery inflated pod and is almost transparent. It can be used in dry flower arrangements as it dries well, maintaining its colour and form.

Ecology:
Sunbirds pollinate the attractive, butterfly-like red flowers. The lightweight, papery, inflated pods enable the seed to be dispersed easily by wind. Stock browse the foliage.

CLICK  &  SEE

Ecologically legumes are well known for fixing nitrogen in the soil through a symbiotic relationship with bacteria. The bacteria infect the roots, forming small growths or nodules. Inside the nodules, atmospheric nitrogen, which the plants cannot use, is converted to ammonia, which plants can use.

The plant supplies sugars for the bacteria, while the bacteria provide the biologically useful nitrogen that the plant absorbs.

Growing Sutherlandia frutescens:
Sutherlandia is fast growing and easy to grow, but short-lived as a garden subject. It is a tough, hardy plant that does well in full sun and tolerates all soil types. It occurs both in summer and winter rainfall regions, and is quite drought tolerant so does not require much watering. When growing it in containers, make sure that it is well drained and don’t over-water. The plant is also quite pest resistant. Plants seed themselves readily, so that as the older plants start to look past their best they can be removed.

It makes interesting temporary filler in the mixed border, rockery or shrubbery, especially if it is planted in groups or en masse. It is also a good contrast foliage plant against a green backdrop and can be used effectively to punctuate a soft landscape planting. It is also a must for the herb garden. It grows well in containers, and can be used as a temporary decoration for the patio or courtyard. Because they are fast and tough, they also work quite well as pioneers in a new garden, where they give cover and colour while the slower growing perennials get going.

The cancer bush seeds itself readily, and grows easily from seed. Sow in autumn or spring in well-drained soil. Germination is improved if seeds are left to soak for about 4 hours or overnight in water hot enough for you to put your hand in. We have found that many members of the pea & bean family are susceptible to pre-emergence damping off. Using sterile soil and treating the seed with the Apron (a.i. metalaxyl) effectively combats fungal infection. Keep the seed trays warm (not hot) and damp but not wet. Germination should occur in 2 to 3 weeks and seedlings can be transplanted as soon as they are large enough to handle. Planting the plants close together in groups of 3 or 5 will give you a fuller, more attractive bush.

Medicinal Properities & Uses:
Sutherlandia frutescens is revered as one of the important medicinal plants in the south Africa and has historically been used by Khoi, Nama and San people.
It has been reported that workers in Namaqualand smoke the plant as a cannabis substitute for its pleasant sedative and anti-anxiety effect. The smoke is also said to relieve extreme pain. The foliage/stems are a rich source of an inhibitory neurotransmitter called GABA and this could well account for its stress fighting anxiolytic effects.

Sutherlandia is also a potent adaptogen that helps to normalize many of the body’s functions and to act as an immune-enhancer as well. It contains a very active compound, canavanine, which has been documented to have anti-viral and anti-cancer activity. Yet another compound, pinitol, has been used to treat wasting syndrome in AIDS and cancer patients.

Infusion made from the leaves is a traditional remedy for fever, chicken pox, flu, rheumatism, hemorrhoids, diarrhea, and stomach and liver problems. Also makes an excellent wash for wounds. Red-orange flowers appear in spring.

One experimental animal study suggest that “S. frutescens shoot aqueous extract possesses analgesic, antiinflammatory, and hypoglycemic properties, and thus lend pharmacological credence to the suggested folkloric uses of the herb in the management and/or control of painful, arthritic and other inflammatory conditions, as well as for adult-onset, type-2 diabetes mellitus in some communities of South Africa.”

Sutherlandia frutescens is a much-respected and long-used medicinal plant that is also an attractive garden plant, and has been cultivated in gardens for many years, for its fine form, striking colour and luminous flowers.

The common name hierba del cancer stems not from the ability of the plant to fight cancer but rather because of the local use of the word cancer to mean an open sore.  The plant is used as a remedy in Belize for a variety of serious skin conditions such as fungus, ulcers, ringworm and itching or burning labia in women.  It is used throughout Latin America as a diuretic. The leaves are used in Guatemala not only as a diuretic but also to treat kidney-related problems.  In Haiti  it is used to treat diarrhea, inflammations and dyspepsia.    In a study of plants used in Guatemala as a diuretic and for the treatment of urinary ailments, extracts of the plant were shown to increase urinary output by 52%.  A dried leaf tincture has been shown to be active against Staphylococcus aureus but inactive against some other bacteria.

Excellent remedy to wash skin conditions of the worst kind such as chronic rashes, blisters, peeling skin, deep sores, ulcers, fungus, ringworm, inflammation, itching and burning of labia in women – boil one entire plant in one quart water for 10 minutes; strain and wash area with very hot water 3 times daily.  Leaves may be dried and toasted and passed through a screen to make a powder to sprinkle on sores, skin infections, or boils. For stomach complaints or urinary infections, boil one entire plant in 3 cups water for 5 minutes; drink 3 cups of warm decoction 3 times a day (1 cup before each meal).  The local use of the word “cancer” refers to a type of open sore.  A dried leaf tincture was shown to have in vitro activity against Staphylococcus aureus.

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/Sutherlandia_frutescens
http://www.bidorbuy.co.za/item/18634216/20_Sutherlandia_frutescens_Seeds_Kankerbos_Cancerbush_Wildegansie_Indigenous_Medicinal.html
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_C.htm

http://fernkloof.com/species2.mv?Sutherlandia%20frutescens

Enhanced by Zemanta

Cyclopia genistoides

Botanical Name : Cyclopia genistoides
Family: Fabaceae
Subfamily: Faboideae
Tribe: Podalyrieae
Genus: Cyclopia
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Fabales

Common Name :Bush Tea,Honeybush tea, Heuningbos,kustee, coastal tea

Habitat :Cyclopia species (Family: Fabaceae), better known as honeybush, are endemic to the fynbos biome of the Western and Eastern Cape provinces of South Africa. It is adapted to the climate and soil in these areas and grow in nematode free, well drained, sandy to sandy loam soils with low pH, low phosphorus, generally occurring in sites with a relatively mild micro-climate.  In mountainous areas the populations are found on the cooler, wetter southern slopes.  Where there is a regular presence of mist, the populations are found on all slopes.

Description:
Cyclopia genistoides is a small, typical fynbos shrub, easy to miss when not in flower. A much-branched woody shrub with golden yellow stems, it grows to about one metre. The short needle-like leaves are arranged in threes along the branches, a typical feature of Cyclopia. When flowering in spring the same shrub can take your breath away with a bold display of bright yellow flowers.
CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES
Money beetles are attracted to the sweet smelling flowers at the tip of the branches. They are responsible for most of the pollination. The brown seeds are formed in small pods that turn brown. The pods dry and split open within a few weeks as the seed ripens.

Propagation & Cultivation:
Cyclopia genistoides can be propagated by seed or cuttings. The best time to sow seed is from summer to autumn. To select viable seeds throw the seed into a jug of water and remove any seeds that float to the surface. Before sowing the seeds need to be treated. First, the hard seed coat which protects the small seeds, needs to be damage to enable the uptake of moisture for germination. In nature this hard seed coat would slowly be damaged in the soil by micro-organisms and other factors. In the nursery the scarifying of the dry seed can be done with sulfuric acid. Proceed with caution to avoid the chemical coming into contact with one’s skin.. If only a small amount of seed is needed, an easier way to damage the seed coat is to lightly sand the seeds with sandpaper.

The seeds of cyclopias and many other fynbos plants are adapted to germinate after fire. Experiments have shown that it is the smoke of the fire which stimulates the germination of the seed. To get this same effect the seed can be treated with smoke extract, which is produced and sold at Kirstenbosch.The seed must be sown on a medium with good drainage and a low pH of 3.5 to 5. Germination usually takes place within two weeks. To prevent damping off, a fungicide should be used.

The young seedlings are potted up as soon as they are big enough to handle and grown on in the nursery before planting out. Many plants of the legume family, which include cyclopias, are often difficult to root from cuttings, but Cyclopia genistoides is an exception. Tip cuttings can be made using Seradix 2 as a rooting hormone.

Honeybush needs to be planted in full sun and well-drained soil. The plants are sensitive to severe frost. The plants grow fairly fast but start to look untidy after a few years if not regularly pruned or burned, which is what usually happens in nature. After fire old honeybush plants shoot out vigorously from the surviving roots,which act as a storage organ.

Medicinal Uses:
Often dried and drunk as tea in South Africa.  Also of great value to sufferers from kidney and liver disorders.  To make the tea the stems and leaves are chopped into small pieces, wet and then left in heaps where they ferment spontaneously, They may be heated in an oven to about 60C – 70 C to enhance the process. After sufficient fermentation, the tea is spread out in the sun to dry. After sifting, it is ready for use. Honeybush tea, with its own distinct sweet taste and aroma, is made like ordinary tea, except that simmering enhances the flavor. Drinking honeybush tea is said to promote good health, stimulate the appetite, and the milk flow of lactating mothers.

Honeybush tea is a herbal infusion and many health properties are associated with the regular consumption of the tea. It has very low tannin content and contains no caffeine. It is therefore especially valuable for children and patients with digestive and heart problems where stimulants and tannins should be avoided.

Research on Honeybush tea has only started recently in the 90’s and already great progress was made on testing and researching the medicinal values of this tea. De Nysschen et al found 1995 three major phenolic compounds in honeybush tealeaves: a xanthone c-glycoside, mangiferin and O-glycosides of hesperitin and isosakuranetin, two flavanones.

Honeybush tea is normally consumed with milk and sugar, but to appreciate the delicate sweet taste and flavor, no milk or sugar should be added. Descriptions of the flavor vary from that of hot apricot jam, floral, honey-like and dried fruit mix with the overall impression of sweetness. The tea has the added advantage that the cold infusion can also be used as iced tea and that it blends well with fruit juices. Honeybush tea is prepared by boiling about 4-6 g of the dried material (approximately 2-3 tablespoonfuls) per liter for 20 minutes.

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.arc.agric.za/home.asp?pid=4053
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_AB.htm
http://www.plantzafrica.com/plantcd/cyclopiagenistoides.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cyclopia_(genus)

Enhanced by Zemanta

Buffalo gourd

Botanical Name :Cucurbita foetidissima
Family: Cucurbitaceae
Genus: Cucurbita
Species: C. foetidissima
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Cucurbitales

Common Names : Buffalo gourd, Calabazilla, Chilicote, Coyote gourd, Fetid gourd, Missouri gourd, Stinking gourd, Wild gourd, Wild pumpkin

Habitat :Buffalo gourd is a xerophytic tuberous plant found in the southwestern USA and northwestern Mexico

Description:
Buffalo gourd is a large plant which is sprawling and prostrate. The leaves can reach large dimensions. The flowers are large and yellow orange with a fringed or rolled margin. The fruits are ovoid and marked with light and dark green when fresh. Cucurbita foetidissima is found at lower to middle elevations. The crushed leaves of this plant have a foul smell, said to resemble the odor of a sweaty armpit. Other members of this family include pumpkin, cucumber and various squashes. Most of these have seeds that look similar to pumpkin or cucumber seeds.
Click to see the picture…...(01).…..(1)………...(2)

Click to enlarge the pictures

Edible Uses:
A member of the cucumber family, the fruit is consumed by humans and animals. The fruit is eaten cooked like a squash when very young. As the fruit becomes fully mature, it is too bitter for humans to eat.

Medicinal Uses:
Several  plant parts of buffalo gourd have medicinal attributes that tribes implement into their culture. The Isleta-Pueblo Indian boiled the roots applying the infusion to chest pains. The Tewa grind the root into a powder drinking it with cold water for laxative effects (not safe: can cause diarrhea and irritation of the digestive tract). Cahuilla Indians used to chew the pulp of the gourd and apply the pithy mass to open sores, or boil the dried root and drink the decoction as either an emetic or a physic.  A poultice of the mashed plant has been used to treat skin sores, ulcers etc. The complete seed, together with the husk, is used as a vermifuge. This is ground into a fine flour, then made into an emulsion with water and eaten. It is then necessary to take a purgative afterwards in order to expel the tapeworms or other parasites from the body. As a remedy for internal parasites, the seeds are less potent than the root of Dryopteris felix-mas, but they are safer for pregnant women, debilitated patients and children. The juice of the root is also disinfecting and remedies toothache. The baked fruit rubbed over rheumatic areas will relieve pain. The seeds and flowers help control swelling. The seed also acts as an effective vermicide (kills worms– Grind seed into a fine flour; mix with water and drink). The poultice of the smashed plant will remedy skin sores and ulcers.  Mix root with olive oil; apply to infected area. The pulp of the gourd was mixed with soap and applied to sores and ulcers that other poultices and plasters had failed to cure.  The supperating parts were liberally dusted with a quantity of pulverized dried seeds.  The root was used to cure a bad case of piles or kill a mass of maggots infesting an open wound.

Other Uses:
When the fruit  gets fully matured   it is used for decorative purposes or in making musical instruments, particularly rattles. The seeds are the source of buffalo gourd oil.

It grows fast (including a massive underground tuber) with little water, and some have proposed growing it for fuel or biofuel ethanol

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.wnmu.edu/academic/nspages/gilaflora/cucurbita_foetidissima.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cucurbita_foetidissima
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_AB.htm

Enhanced by Zemanta

Bu Gu Zhi

Botanical Name : Psoralea corylifolia
Family: Fabaceae
Genus: Psoralea
Species: P. corylifolia
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Fabales

Common Name: Babchi , Bu Gu Zhi,Psoralea Seed, Malay Tea, Cot Chu, Ku Tzu Malaysia, Scurf-pea, Malaysian Scurfpea, P’o Ku Chih, Pha Cot Chi

Habitat :Asia, from Iran to China, Africa and the Middle East. Warm valleys in Guizhou, Sichuan and Yunnan Provinces, China

Description:
A herbaceous annual, is about 1 m in height. The leaves are arranged in racemes.The purple seed pods contain dark elongated seeds. It is in flower from Jul to August, and the seeds ripen from Sep to October. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.It can fix Nitrogen.

click to see the pictures….> ..……(01)....(1).....(2).....……………………………………..

The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and requires well-drained soil.The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils..It cannot grow in the shade.It requires moist soil.

Cultivation:
We have very little information for this species and do not know if it will be hardy in Britain, though judging by its native range it should succeed outdoors at least in the milder parts of the country. The following notes are based on the general needs of the genus. Succeeds in an ordinary garden soil. Requires a well-drained soil in a sunny position. Plants are very intolerant of root disturbance, they are best planted out into their permanent positions whilst still small. 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.

Propagation:
Pre-soak the seed for 24 hours in warm water and then sow in early to mid spring in a greenhouse. Either sow the seed in individual pots or pot up the young seedlings as soon as possible in order to avoid root disturbance. Grow them on in the pots until planting out in their final positions. It is usually impossible to transplant this species without fatal damage to the root. Division in spring. With great care since the plant resents root disturbance. It is virtually impossible to divide this species successfully

Edible Uses; Seeds are known to be eaten.

Medicinal Uses:
Anthelmintic;  Antibacterial;  Aphrodisiac;  Astringent;  Cardiac;  Cytotoxic;  Deobstruent;  Diaphoretic;  Diuretic;  Infertility;  Kidney;  Odontalgic;  Skin;  Stimulant;  Stomachic;  Tonic.

Bu Gu Zhi is valued in Chinese herbal medicine as a tonic remedy and is used to improve general vitality. Modern research has shown that it is also of value in the treatment of skin disorders, including vitiligo. Some caution should be employed when applying the herb externally, however, since it can sensitise the skin and cause an allergic reaction to sunlight. The one-seeded fruits (or the seed plus the seedpod) are highly regarded as an aphrodisiac and tonic to the genital organs. The seed is anthelmintic, antibacterial, aphrodisiac, astringent, cardiac, cytotoxic, deobstruent, diaphoretic, diuretic, stimulant, stomachic and tonic. It is used in the treatment of febrile diseases, premature ejaculation, impotence, lower back pains, frequent urination, incontinence, bed wetting etc. It is also used externally to treat various skin ailments including leprosy, leucoderma and hair loss. The seed and fruit contain psoralen. This causes the skin to produce new pigment when exposed to sunlight and is used for treating vitiligo and psoriasis. The antibacterial action of the fruit inhibits the growth of Mycobacterium tuberculos. The fruit is gathered when ripe in the autumn and can be dried for later use. The root is used for treating dental caries. The plant yields a useful medicinal oleoresin, it treats kidney disorders, impotence, premature ejaculation, lumbago etc

It is an important plant in the Indian Ayurveda too in Tamil Siddha systems of medicine. The seeds of this plant contain a variety of coumarins including psoralen. The seeds have a variety of medicinal uses, but the specific role (if any) of psoralen in these uses is unknown. Psoralen itself has a number of commercial uses. An extract of the plant’s fruit Fructus psoraleæ has been shown to act as a norepinephrine-dopamine reuptake inhibitor.

One study in rats suggested that bakuchiol and ethanol extracts of P. corylifolia could protect against bone loss. Bakuchiol isolated from the Chinese medicinal plant, Psoralea corylifolia (Fabaceae), has shown activity against numerous Grampositive and Gram-negative oral pathogens. It was able to inhibit the growth of Streptococcus mutans under a range of sucrose concentrations, pH values and in the presence of organic acids in a temperature-dependent manner and also inhibited the growth of cells adhered to a glass surface. It may be of assistance in treating prostate cancer.

Very high concentrations of the anticancer chemical, genistein, have been found in the leaves of Psoralea corylifolia

Psoralea Corylifolia has been shown to inhibit mitochondrial complex I and may therefore increase susceptibility to oxidative stress.

The one-seeded fruits (or the seed plus the seedpod) are highly regarded as an aphrodisiac and tonic to the genital organs.  It is used in the treatment of  debility and other problems reflecting “kidney yang deficiency”, such as febrile diseases, premature ejaculation, impotence, lower back pains, frequent urination, incontinence, bed wetting etc. It is also used externally to treat various skin ailments including leprosy, leucoderma and hair loss. The seed and fruit contain psoralen. This causes the skin to produce new pigment when exposed to sunlight and is used for treating vitiligo and psoriasis. This has been supported by Chinese studies.  In Vietnam, a tincture of the seeds is used to treat rheumatism.   It is antifungal and for most skin diseases should be taken internally and externally.  For the latter, the seeds are crushed and topically applied in a poultice.  Research has been done on using the seeds for alopecia. An injection of psoralea extracts and exposure to ultraviolet light were used in 45 cases. Within six months hair was completely resored in 36% of the cases and there was a significant restoration in another 30%.  In Ayurveda it is used as an anti-pitta herb, for skin diseases and hair loss.  The antibacterial action of the fruit inhibits the growth of Mycobacterium tuberculos. The plant yields a useful medicinal oleoresin, it treats kidney disorders, impotence, premature ejaculation, lumbago etc.

Precautions:
May increase Pitta when taken alone; do not take with low body fluids; do not use with licorice root.

The essential oil varies enormously in its effects on different persons. With the majority (95 per cent) of people, it causes only redness of the leucodermal patches. But in a small number (5 per cent) there is extreme sensitiveness to the oil. It may even cause blistering of the skin. The strength of the oil should therefore be varied in such a way as not to allow its action to go beyond the state of redness of the leucodermic patches.

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://search.myway.com/search/GGcached.jhtml?pg=AJmain&ord=4&action=click&searchfor=Psoralea%2Bcorylifolia&curl=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.pfaf.org%2Fuser%2FPlant.aspx%3FLatinName%3DPsoralea%2520corylifolia&isDirResults=false&tpr=sbt&cid=iJusjo6y_3wJ&st=site&ct=GC

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

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

http://www.motherherbs.com/psoralea-corylifolia.html

http://www.hillgreen.com/herbs_o1_p3.html

http://www.dadimakanuskha.com/psoraleacorylifolia.php

http://www.mdidea.com/products/new/new10102.html

Enhanced by Zemanta

Silene vulgaris

Botanical Name :Silene vulgaris
Family: Caryophyllaceae
Subfamily: Caryophylloideae
Genus: Silene
Species: S. vulgaris
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Caryophyllales

Synonym(s): maidenstears

Common Names :Silene vulgaris, Silene cucubalus or Bladder Campion

Habitat :Silene vulgaris is native to Europe, where in some parts it is eaten, but is widespread in North America where it is considered a weed.Arable land, roadsides, grassy slopes etc, avoiding acid soils.

Description:
Silene vulgaris is a perennial herb, growing to 0.6 m (2ft).
It is hardy to zone 6 and is not frost tender. It is in flower from Jun to August, and the seeds ripen from Jul to September. The flowers are dioecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but only one sex is to be found on any one plant so both male and female plants must be grown if seed is required) and are pollinated by Lepidoptera, bees.The plant is not self-fertile.
It is noted for attracting wildlife.
CLICK &  SEE  THE  PICTURES

The plant prefers light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils.The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils..It cannot grow in the shade.It requires moist soil.

Cultivation:
Prefers a well-drained moisture retentive light loamy soil in a sunny position[1, 200]. A good moth plant. Dioecious. Male and female plants must be grown if seed is required.

Propagation:
Seed – sow early spring in a cold frame. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in the summer. If you have sufficient seed, an outdoor sowing in situ can be made. Division in spring. Larger divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions. We have found it best to pot up the smaller divisions and grow them on in a lightly shaded position in a cold frame, planting them out once they are well established in the summer.

Edible Uses:
Young shoots and leaves – raw or cooked. The young leaves are sweet and very agreeable in salads. The cooked young shoots, harvested when about 5cm long, have a flavour similar to green peas but with a slight bitterness. This bitterness can be reduced by blanching the shoots as they appear from the ground. When pureed it is said to rival the best spinach purees. The leaves can also be finely chopped and added to salads. The leaves should be used before the plant starts to flower. Some caution is advised, see the notes on toxicity above.

In Spain, the young shoots and the leaves are used as food. The tender leaves may be eaten raw in salads. The older leaves are usually eaten boiled or fried, sauteed with garlic as well as in omelettes.

Formerly in La Mancha region of Spain, where Silene vulgaris leaves are valued as a green vegetable, there were people known as “collejeros” who picked these plants and sold them. Leaves are small and narrow, so it takes many plants to obtain a sizeable amount.

In La Mancha the Silene vulgaris leaves, locally known as “collejas”, were mainly used to prepare a dish called gazpacho viudo (widower gazpacho). The ingredients were flatbread known as tortas de gazpacho and a stew prepared with Silene vulgaris leaves. The reference to a widower originated in the fact that this dish was only eaten when meat was scarce and the leaves were emergency or lean-times food, a substitute for an essential ingredient. Other dishes prepared with these leaves in Spain include “potaje de garbanzos y collejas”, “huevos revueltos con collejas” and “arroz con collejas”.

In Crete it is called Agriopapoula  and the locals eat its leaves and tender shoots browned in olive oil

Medicinal Uses:
The plant is said to be emollient and is used in baths or as a fumigant. The juice of the plant is used in the treatment of ophthalmia.

Other Uses:
Although no specific mention has been seen for this species, it is most likely that the following use can be made of the plant:- The root is used as a soap substitute for washing clothes etc. The soap is obtained by simmering the root in hot water.

Known Hazards:
Although no mention of toxicity has been seen for this species, it does contain saponins. Although toxic, these substances are very poorly absorbed by the body and so tend to pass through without causing harm. They are also broken down by thorough cooking. Saponins are found in many plants, including several that are often used for food, such as certain beans. It is advisable not to eat large quantities of food that contain saponins. Saponins are much more toxic to some creatures, such as fish, and hunting tribes have traditionally put large quantities of them in streams, lakes etc in order to stupefy or kill the fish.

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.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Silene%20vulgaris
http://www.cas.vanderbilt.edu/bioimages/species/sivu.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silene_vulgaris

Enhanced by Zemanta

Cymopterus bulbosus

Botanical Name :Cymopterus bulbosus
Family :Apiaceae
Genus : Cymopterus Raf.
Species : Cymopterus bulbosus A. Nelson
Kingdom : Plantae
Subkingdom :Tracheobionta
Superdivision : Spermatophyta
Division : Magnoliophyta
Class : Magnoliopsida
Subclass : Rosidae
Order : Apiales

Common Name :Biscuit Root

Habitat :South-western N. America – Wyoming to Texas and New Mexico. Dry hills and plains at elevations of 1200 – 2100 metres.

Description:
Cymopterus bulbosus is a perennial hurb. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.The plant is self-fertile.
CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES……

The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and requires well-drained soil.The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils..It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade.It requires dry or moist soil.

Propagation
Seed – we have no information on this species but suggest sowing the seed in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe if this is possible. Sow stored seed as early in the year as possible in a greenhouse. As soon as they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Division in spring or autumn might be possible

Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Condiment;  Leaves;  Root.

The root can be eaten raw, cooked or dried for later use. The dried leaves are used as a flavouring.  A celery flavouring. Leaves – cooked

Medicinal Uses:
The plant has been eaten as a stomach medicine.

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.

Sources:
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Cymopterus%20bulbosus
http://www.swcoloradowildflowers.com/Pink%20Enlarged%20Photo%20Pages/cymopterus%20bulbosus%20and%20constancei.htm
http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=CYBU
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_AB.htm

Enhanced by Zemanta

Beach Pea

Botanical Name :Lathyrus japonicus
Family: Fabaceae
Subfamily: Faboideae
Tribe: Vicieae
Genus: Lathyrus
Species: L. japonicus
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Fabales
Common Name :Sea Pea, Beach Pea, Circumpolar Pea, Sea Vetchling

Habitat :Native to temperate coastal areas of Asia, Europe, North and South America.

Description:
It is a herbaceous perennial plant growing trailing stems to 50–80 cm long, typically on sand and gravel storm beaches. The leaves are waxy glaucous green, 5–10 cm long, pinnate, with 2-5 pairs of leaflets, the terminal leaflet usually replaced by a twining tendril. The flowers are 14–22 mm broad, with a dark purple standard petal and paler purple wing and keel petals; they are produced in racemes of 2-7 together.

click to see the pictures
The unusually extensive native range is explained by the ability of the seeds to remain viable while floating in sea water for up to 5 years, enabling the seeds to drift nearly worldwide. Germination occurs when the hard outer seed coat is abraded by waves on sand and gravel.

Medicinal Uses:
The leaves of the plant are used in Chinese traditional medicine.
Chinese used this Pacific Rim wild food as a tonic for the urinary organs and intestinal tract.  Eskimo considered the peas poisonous…Iroquois treated rheumatism with cooked whole young plant.

Known Hazards :The pods can be eaten but like many members of the genus Lathyrus they contain -diaminopropionic acid, which can cause paralysis called lathyrism.

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/Lathyrus_japonicus
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_AB.htm
http://calphotos.berkeley.edu/cgi/img_query?enlarge=6040+1631+1307+0099

Enhanced by Zemanta

Bai Zhi

Botanical Name :Angelica dahurica
Family: Apiaceae /Umbelliferae
Genus: Angelica
Species: A. dahurica
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Apiales

Common NameBai Zhi

Habitat :In grasses of valleys, by streams or at forest edges in China.   E. Asia – Japan, Korea, Siberia. It  grows in the  damp habitats in mountains, C. Japan. Thickets.

Description:
Angelica dahurica  is a biennial/perennial plant, growing to 1.8 m (6ft).
It is not frost tender. It is in flower from Jul to August, and the seeds ripen from Aug to October. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.The plant is self-fertile.

CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES

The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils.The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils..It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade.It requires moist soil.

Cultivation:
We have very little information on this species and do not know how hardy it will be in Britain, though judging by its native range it should succeed outdoors in most parts of this country. The following notes are based on the general needs of the genus. Requires a deep moist fertile soil in dappled shade or full sun. Plants are reliably perennial if they are prevented from setting seed.

Propagation:
Seed – best sown in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe since the seed only has a short viability. Seed can also be sown in the spring, though germination rates will be lower. It requires light for germination. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a cold frame for their first winter, planting them out into their permanent positions in the spring. The seed can also be sow in situ as soon as it is ripe

Edible Uses:    .The stalks of this plant have also been commonly used as a food ingredient. The stems have been made into decorative items. The seeds are often used as a seasoning condiment in food as well as a source of flavoring in liqueur. Another popular usage for this herb is its ingredient in cosmetic products.

Medicinal Uses:
Analgesic;  Antibacterial;  Antidote;  CarminativeDiaphoreticPoultice;  Stimulant.

Bai Zhi has been used for thousands of years in Chinese herbal medicine where it is used as a sweat-inducing herb to counter harmful external influences. Bai Zhi is contraindicated for pregnant women. The root contains an essential oil, resins, furanocoumarins etc. It is analgesic, anodyne, antibacterial, antidote, carminative, diaphoretic, diuretic, poultice and stimulant. It is used in the treatment of frontal headache, tothache, rhinitis, boils, carbuncles and skin diseases. It appears to be of value in treating the facial pain of trigeminal neuralgia. The roots are harvested in the autumn, dried and stored for later use. Small quantities of angelicotoxin, one of the active ingredients in the root, have an excitatory effect on the respiratory centre, central nervous system and vasculomotor centre. It increases the rate of respiration, increases blood pressure, decreases the pulse, increases the secretion of saliva and induces vomiting. In large doses it can cause convulsions and generalized paralysis.

Known Hazards :    Aside from the medicinal properties that this plant offers, this species also contain furocoumarins which increases skin sensitivity to sunlight and may cause dermatitis. Another compound called the angelicotoxin, is an active ingredient within the root. This has an excitatory effect on the respiratory system, central nervous system, and the vasculomotor system of the body. It is known to increase the rate of respiration, blood pressure, decrease pulse rate, increases saliva production and induces vomiting. In large doses, the toxin can induce convulsions and paralysis.

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.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Angelica%20dahurica
http://www.nobodybuy.com/product_desc/pid741959/angelica-dahurica-extract.htm

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Angelica_dahurica