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Goodyera pubescens

Botanical Name:Goodyera pubescens
Family:Orchidaceae
Subfamily:Orchidoideae
Genus:Goodyera
Species:G. pubescens
Kingdom:Plantae
Order:Asparagales

Common Name :Rattlesnake Plantain

Habitat :Goodyera pubescens is native to eastern N. America – Maine to Florida, west to Alberta and Quebec. It grows in almost any wooded habitat with acid soils, mainly on moist humus soils in shady, upland woods of hemlock, pine, oak, or maple, less frequent in lowland woods, bogs, swamps; 0 -1600 metres

Description:
Goodyera pubescens is an evergreen Perennial orchid growing to 0.4m. It is of terrestrial species with variegated leaves. The variegation is in the form of a densely-reticulated network of veins that are a much lighter green than the rest of the leaf tissue. It is a creeping plant that divides on the ground surface and sends out short stolons. It may be terrestrial or, occasionally, epipetric, growing on rock shelves. It prefers mildly to moderately acidic soils, such as in oak-heath forests

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Plant pubescent above the leaves, 10-40 cm tall (including inflorescence), arising from a branching rhizome supported by a cluster of slightly fleshy, fibrous roots, often forming dense clusters of rosettes. Leaves 4-8, forming a basal rosette, petiolate, oblong-elliptical to elliptical-lanceolate, 3-9 cm long and 1-3.5 cm wide, dark green or blue-green with a prominent white stripe along the midrib and a prominent network of reticulate white markings. Inflorescence a downy, dense spicate raceme 10-40 cm tall, 20-50 flowered, typically cylindrical, each flower subtended by a small, lanceolate bract. Sepals ovate to ovate-lanceolate, concave, 4-5 mm long and 3-4 mm wide, white and smooth inside, the outer surfaces pubescent and often marked with green, lateral sepals typically smaller than dorsal sepal and slightly spreading; dorsal sepal connivent with petals to form a hood over the column. Petals oblong or spatulate, 3.5-6 mm long and about 3 mm wide, closely appressed to the dorsal sepal, white. Labellum deeply globular-saccate to scrotiform, the apex prolonged into an blunt point (looking somewhat like a spout), 3.5-4.5 mm long and 3-3.5 mm wide, white, pubescent outside.

It is hardy to zone 6. It is in leaf all year, in flower from July to August. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.
The plant prefers light (sandy) and medium (loamy) 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.

SIMILAR SPECIES: Goodyera pubescens can easily be confused with G. tesselata or perhaps G. repens var. ophioides. G. pubescens can be separated from G. tesselata by the labellum, which is concave in G. tesselata, but is deeply globular-saccate in G. pubescens. Also, the leaves of G. tesselata are smaller than those of G. pubescens, and typically lack the thick white central vein of G. pubescens. G. pubescens can be separated fromG. repens var. ophioides by the inflorescence, which is secund or loosely spiraled in G. repens var. ophioides, but is a cylindrical, densely-packed spike in G. pubescens.

Cultivation:
Requires a somewhat shady site and a well-drained compost of peat, leafmold and sand. Does well in the woodland garden. Orchids are, in general, shallow-rooting plants of well-drained low-fertility soils. Their symbiotic relationship with a fungus in the soil allows them to obtain sufficient nutrients and be able to compete successfully with other plants. They are very sensitive to the addition of fertilizers or fungicides since these can harm the symbiotic fungus and thus kill the orchid. This species is closely related to the British native species, G. repens. This plant is too rare in the wild to be harvested.

Propagation:
Seed – surface sow, preferably as soon as it is ripe, in the greenhouse and do not allow the compost to dry out. The seed of this species is extremely simple, it has a minute embryo surrounded by a single layer of protective cells. It contains very little food reserves and depends upon a symbiotic relationship with a species of soil-dwelling fungus. The fungal hyphae invade the seed and enter the cells of the embryo. The orchid soon begins to digest the fungal tissue and this acts as a food supply for the plant until it is able to obtain nutrients from decaying material in the soil. It is best to use some of the soil that is growing around established plants in order to introduce the fungus, or to sow the seed around a plant of the same species and allow the seedlings to grow on until they are large enough to move

Medicinal Uses:
Appetizer; Miscellany; Odontalgic; Ophthalmic; Poultice.

A tea made from the roots is used in the treatment of pleurisy and snakebites. A tea made from the leaves is taken to improve the appetite, as a treatment for colds, kidney ailments, rheumatism and toothaches. Externally, a poultice of the wilted leaves is used to cool burns, treat skin ulcers and relieve rheumatic joints. An ooze from the plant (this probably means the sap or the juice of the bulb) has been used as eye drops to treat sore eyes.

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://digedibles.com/database/plants.php?Goodyera+pubescens
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Goodyera_pubescens
http://www.botany.wisc.edu/orchids/Gpubescens.html

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Cypripedium pubescens

Botanical Name :Cypripedium pubescens
Family: Orchidaceae
Subfamily: Cypripedioideae
Genus: Cypripedium
Species: C. pubescens
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Asparagales

Common Names: Large yellow lady’s slipper, Yellow moccasin-flower, Nerveroot, Noah’s ark, American valerian, Whippoorwill’s-shoe,Lady’s Slipper
(The specific epithet calceolus is the Latin meaning “little shoe,” in reference to the slipper-like shape of the labellum. The varietal name pubescens is the Latin meaning “downy” or “hairy,” in reference to the hairy nature of the plant.)

Habitat : Cypripedium pubescens is  native to northern North America.In the southern part of Wisconsin, this variety is typically found growing in moist, rich deciduous woods. Further north it occurs in similar habitat but may also occur in boggy or swampy areas (where it also occasionally found in the south). The plant is rarely found in clayey soils, and shows a distinct preference for areas of limestone. In Door County, where this taxon is particularly numerous, it often grows in limestone gravel along roadsides.

Description:
Plant arising from a rhizome with a fascicle of numerous fibrous roots, 15-80 cm high; several to many stems may arise from the same rhizome. Leaves 3-5 (-6), ovate to ovate-lanceolate, plicate, 5-20 cm long and 4-10 cm wide; pubescent. Flowers 1-2, each subtended by a ovate to ovate-lanceolate, green foliaceous bract 4-10 cm long by 1-4 cm wide. Sepals apparently two (the result of the fusion of the two lateral sepals behind the labellum), green streaked with brown to brown (but highly variable in coloration); dorsal sepal ovate, 3-7 cm long and 1-3.5 cm wide; lateral sepals united and similar to dorsal sepal but typically spirally twisted, tip typically divided. Petals colored as sepals, linear-lanceolate, 4-9.5 cm long and typically less than 1 cm wide; petals usually spirally twisted. Labellum pouch-shaped, inflated, obovate, 1.5-6 cm long, opening above with inrolled edges; yellow streaked or spotted inside with madder-purple.
FLOWERING TIME: May 10-July 15.

 

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POLLINATION: According to Stoutamire (1967), plants are pollinated by a number of different species of small bees, primarily adrenid and halictid bees. The plants are also visited and sometimes pollinated by a variety of Diptera.

Medicinal Uses:
Cypripedium pubescens used to be a specific remedy to overcome depression, mental anxiety, and troubled sleep.  It was often recommended for women for both emotional and physical imbalances relating to menopause or menstruation, such as nervous tension, headaches, or cramps.  Cypripedium pubescens is said to increase nervous tone after a long disease and to relax nervous muscle twitches.  It is almost always given as an alcoholic tincture, since some constituents are not water-soluble.  Cypripedium pubescens is often compared to valerian, although valerian doesn’t create the uncomfortable side effects.

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.botany.wisc.edu/orchids/pubescens.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cypripedium_pubescens
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_LMN.htm

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Aconitum chasmanthum

Botanical Name: Aconitum chasmanthum
Family Name: Ranunculaceae
Genus
: Aconitum
Local Name: Beshmolo
Urdu Name: Mori
English name: Aconite
Part used: Roots

Habitat: E. Asia – Western Himalayas from Chitral to Kashmir at 2100 – 3500 metres. Mountains at elevations around 4600 metres. In Gilgit/ Baltistan this herb usually grow wild. It occurs in Rattu Cant, Kalapani, Kamri, Ghuraz, Tarshing, Rupal and almost in all Nullahs of Astore. It is also found in Kargh Nullah, Nalter, and Chaprote Nagar.

Description:Perennial growing to 0.5m.
It is in flower in September. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees.

Stem 30 to 80 cm tall leafy. The upper leaves only slightly smaller than the lower ones. Inflorescence racemes up to 30 cm long. Sepals blue or white with blue veins, rarely pale purple, crisp pubescent to glabrous, lateral ones sub orbicular to nearly square, not contiguous with helmet. Claw of petals 5 to 7 mm. Filaments often almost glabrous, winged. Wings not ending in tiny teeth.

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Caudex carrot-shaped, ca. 7 cm, ca. 8 mm in diam. Stem ca. 50 cm, glabrous. Leaf petiole 3–5.5 cm, glabrous; leaf blade pentagonal-orbicular, 4.2–4.8 × 4–5.6 cm, both surfaces glabrous or nearly so; central segment rhombic, base narrowly cuneate, 3-parted nearly to base; lobes ± dissected; lateral segments obliquely flabellate, unequally 2-parted. Inflorescence ca. 15 cm, densely ca. 25-flowered; rachis and pedicels spreading pubescent; proximal bracts leaflike, distal ones linear. Proximal pedicels 4–7 mm, distally with 2 bracteoles; bracteoles linear, ca. 3 mm. Sepals blue-violet, abaxially sparsely pubescent; lower sepals oblong; lateral sepals broadly obovate or orbicular-obovate, ca. 1.3 cm; upper sepal navicular-falcate or navicular, ca. 5 mm wide, narrowly beaked, ca. 1.8 cm from base to beak, lower margin slightly concave. Petals ca. 1.5 cm; claw rarely pubescent; limb glabrous, ca. 5 mm; lip ca. 2.5 mm; spur ca. 0.7 mm, semiglobose. Stamens glabrous, rarely sparsely pubescent; filaments entire. Carpels 5, sparsely pubescent.

The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and can grow in heavy clay soil. 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 if it will be hardy in Britain. The following notes are based on the general needs of the genus. Thrives in most soils and in the light shade of trees. Grows well in heavy clay soils. Prefers a moist soil in sun or semi-shade. Prefers a calcareous soil. Members of this genus seem to be immune to the predations of rabbits and deer. Grows well in open woodlands. A greedy plant, inhibiting the growth of nearby species, especially legumes.

Propagation
Seed – best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame. The seed can be stratified and sown in spring but will then be slow to germinate. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a cold frame for their first winter. Plant them out in late spring or early summer. Division – best done in spring but it can also be done in autumn. Another report says that division is best carried out in the autumn or late winter because the plants come into growth very early in the year

Medicinal uses:
Analgesic; Anodyne; Diaphoretic; Diuretic; Irritant; Sedative.

The dried root is analgesic, anodyne, diaphoretic, diuretic, irritant and sedative. The root is a rich source of active alkaloids, containing around 3%. It is best harvested as soon as the plant dies down in the autumn. This is a very poisonous plant and should only be used with extreme caution and under the supervision of a qualified practitioner.

Antirheumatic, useful in heart diseases, neurasthenic and fever, diaphoretic, diuretic, anodyne, anti diabetic.

Locally , the dried pulverized roots are mixed butter and given as ointment on abscess and boils also mixed with tobacco and uses as “Naswar”.

Known Hazards : The whole plant is highly toxic – simple skin contact has caused numbness in some people.

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.sdpi.org/alpine%20medicianl%20herbs/1.htm
http://server9.web-mania.com/users/pfafardea/database/plants.php?Aconitum+chasmanthum
http://www.efloras.org/florataxon.aspx?flora_id=2&taxon_id=200007140

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Zang Qie(Anisodus tanguticus)

Botanical Name :Anisodus tanguticus
Family: Solanaceae
Genus: Anisodus
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Solanales
Species: A. tanguticus

Other  Names: Anisodus tanguticus is more commonly known in China as sh?n làngdàng  or Zang Qie.

Habitat : A. tanguticus is mainly located in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. It is present from altitudes from 2800 m to 4200 m. The population of A. tanguticus has decreased significantly from this region due to extensive collecting primarily due to its medicinal uses.Due to its distribution in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau, which includes many mountains and valleys, A. tanguticus can be found in very isolated areas relative to another patch of the same plant. This has led to a high level of genetic differentiation of A. tanguticus.

Description:
Anisodus tanguticus is a species of flowering plant in the family Solanaceae which includes many important agricultural plants.  A. tanguticus are collected and used mostly for its medicinal effects thought to be derived from the plants biologically active nicotine and tropane alkaloids. It has a significant impact in China as one of the 50 traditional herbs used in traditional Chinese medicine.
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Anisodus tanguticus is a perennial plant. It has flowers that are mostly solitary and borne in leaf axils. The flowers are mostly star shaped and radial. Most of them are nodding but they can sometimes become erect.

The pedicels have a range of lengths, but most are around at an average of about 1.5-11 cm long. These pedicels can either have no hair or bristles (glabrous) or be covered with hair (pubescent).

The calyx or sepals are often found in a funnel shape and usually average about 2.5–4 cm long.

Most of the lobes of A. tanguticus appear broadly dentate. Closer examination of these lobes reveal one to two lobes being larger and longer than the other lobes. The apex of these lobes are either acute or obtuse and are slightly unequal and do not have any hair on them.

The petals that make up the corolla appear in a range of colors. Most of the time they are purple to dark purple, but in some cases can even appear pale yellow to green. These petals are also arranged into a funnel and tend to grow between 2.5-4 cm long.

The stamens are located at the base of the corolla tube and are half the length of the corolla. The filaments are about 0.8 cm long and are hairless.

The anthers are shaped oblong with length of about 5-6 mm. Upon maturity, they tend to dehisce longitudinally.

The ovary is shaped like a cone and above it has styles that are approximately 1.2 cm long. The stigma at the top are often shaped like a disc and dehisce a little bit upon maturity.

A few pollinators of the plant include flies, honeybees, and ants.
Attempts to increase population
The population of A. tanguticus is starting to dwindle in its main habitat of Qinghai-Tibet Plateau in China. In addition to its collection for its medicinal purposes, the germination rate of A. tanguticus is very low, even under most natural conditions. This is probably due to its seeds which have a very hard seed coat which prevent water absorption and also act to inhibit gaseous exchange. The seeds of A. tanguticus are therefore classified as having coat-imposed dormancy.

A study conducted tried to find a way to break the dormancy in order to help germinate the seeds. They used several combinations of treatments which included chilling, gibberellic acid, and mechanical scarification.

The scarification method, which included breaking, scratching, or softening of the seed coat, was found to be the only way to increase germination. The rate improved to about 70% and the germination time was improved to 4.1 days.

The study hoped to find ways to increase the population of the plant.

Medicinal uses
A. tanguticus  is one of the 50 fundamental herbs used in traditional Chinese medicine.

It has high levels of two tropane alkaloids called hyoscyamine and scopolamine. These chemicals primarily affect the parasympathetic nervous system and can act as anticholinergic agents.

Anisodamine and Anisodine are two drugs that are derived from A. tanguticus. These are primarily from the plant’s tropane alkaloids that are harvested through its roots. Both drugs are anticholinergic and are sometimes used to treat acute circulatory shock. These drugs primarily act through by being an anticholinergic agent.

Anisodamine in particular was introduced into clinical use in China in 1965 through the manufacture of a synthetic drug that concentrated the alkaloids from the plant. It was first use to treat epidemic meningitis, but was later used to treat other ailments. These included glomerular nephritis, rheumatoid arthritis, hemorrhagic necrotic enteritis, eclampsia, and lung edema, along with shock.

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/Anisodus_tanguticus
http://www.efloras.org/florataxon.aspx?flora_id=2&taxon_id=200020508

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Glochidion Puberum

 

Botanical Name : Glochidion puberum
Family :Euphorbiaceae/Phyllanthaceae subfamily: Phyllanthoideae tribe: Phyllantheae. Also placed in: Euphorbiaceae
Synonyms: Agyneia pubera L. (basionym)

Genus : Glochidion


Habitat :
E. Asia – southern and western China.  Montane slopes, stream banks scrub or forest edges at elevations of 300 – -2200 metres.Woodland Garden; Sunny Edge; Dappled Shade;
Slopes, scrub on stream banks, forest margins; 300-2200 m. Anhui, Fujian, Gansu, Guangdong, Guangxi, Guizhou, Hainan, Henan, Hubei, Hunan, Jiangsu, Jiangxi, Shaanxi, Sichuan, Taiwan, Xizang, Yunnan, Zhejiang [Japan].

Description: A decidious Perennial  Shrub growing to 3m.
Erect shrubs 1-5 m tall, monoecious, much branched; branchlets gray-brown, densely pubescent. Stipules triangular, ca. 1 mm; petiole 1-3 mm; leaf blade oblong, oblong-ovate, or obovate-oblong, rarely lanceolate, 3-8 × 1-2.5 cm, papery or subleathery, gray-green and midvein sparsely pubescent or glabrescent adaxially, greenish and densely pubescent abaxially, base cuneate to obtuse, apex obtuse, acute, shortly acuminate, or rounded; lateral veins 4-8 pairs, elevated abaxially, reticulate nerves prominent. Flowers in axillary clusters, 2-5-flowered, proximal axils mostly to all male flowers, distal axils mostly to all female flowers. Male flowers: pedicels 4-15 mm; sepals 6, narrowly oblong or oblong-obovate, 2.5-3.5 mm, spreading, green to yellowish, densely pubescent outside; stamens 3, connate into a cylindric column. Female flowers: pedicels ca. 1 mm; sepals 6, as in male, but shorter and thicker, green; ovary globose, densely pubescent, 5-10-locular; ovules 2 per locule; style column annular, shortly lobed in summit. Capsules depressed-globose, 8-15 mm in diam., 8-10-grooved, densely pubescent, reddish when mature, apex with persistent annular styles. Seeds subreniform, 3-angled, ca. 4 mm, red. Fl. Apr-Aug, fr. Jul-Nov.

click to see the pictures
It is hardy to zone 0. The flowers are monoecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but both sexes can be found on the same plant)
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 if it will be hardy in Britain. However, judging by its native range, it could succeed outdoors at least in the milder areas of the country. It is likely to require a sheltered sunny position with some protection from winter cold.

Propagation:-
Seed – we have no information for this species but recommend sowing the seed in a warm greenhouse, preferably as soon as ripe if this is possible. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first year. Plant out in early summer after the last expected frosts and consider giving the plant some protection from the frost during at least its first winter outdoors.

Medicinal Actions & Uses:-

Depurative; Febrifuge.

Febrifuge, depurative. Dispels clots. All parts of the plant are used as medicine for the treatment of dysentery, diarrhea, rupture, cough, etc.

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.

Other Uses

Oil.

The seeds contain up to 20 per cent of oil, which is used in making soap and as a lubricating oil.

Resource :
http://www.pfaf.org/database/plants.php?Glochidion+puberum
http://www.ars-grin.gov/cgi-bin/npgs/html/taxon.pl?403683
http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=GLPU6
http://www.efloras.org/florataxon.aspx?flora_id=620&taxon_id=200012580

 

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