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Myrica nagi

Botanical Name: Myrica nagi
Family: Myricaceae
Genus: Myrica
Species: M. esculenta
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Fagales
Synonyms:
*Myrica integrifolia
*Myrica sapida
Common Name : Box Myrtle

Habitat : Myrica nagi is native to E. Asia – Himalayas. It grows on drier aspects to 1800 metres. Open, mixed forests on mountain slopes at elevations of 300 – 2500 metres.

Description:
Myrica nagi is an evergreen Tree growing to 12 m (39ft 4in). It is in leaf 12-Jan. The leaves are long and either pale or rust- colored. The tree has many hairy branches. The flowers that bloom on them are few and far apart and quite small in size as well. The seeds of the plant own a wrinkled appearance.

The bark that grows on the tree Myrica Nagi is aromatic in nature and owing to it; the tree has been in use for its aromatic properties for ages.
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 Wind.The plant is not self-fertile.
It can fix Nitrogen.

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Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid and neutral soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil. The plant can tolerates strong winds but not maritime exposure.

Cultivation:
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. Prefers a lime-free loamy or peaty soil. We are not sure how hardy this plant will be in Britain, it is unlikely to succeed outside the very mildest areas of the country. There is also some confusion between this species and M. rubra, it is possible that they are the same. The fruit is sold in local markets in the Himalayas. It ripens over a fairly long period, so is not suitable for commercial cultivation. Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus. Dioecious, male and female plants must be grown if seed is required. 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.
Propagation:
Seed – best sown as soon as it is ripe in the autumn in a cold frame. Barely cover the seed and keep it moist. Stored seed germinates more freely if given a 3 month cold stratification and then sown in a cold frame. Germination is usually good[78]. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and grow 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. Fair to good percentage. Cuttings of mature wood in November/December in a frame. Layering in spring. Division of suckers in the dormant season. Plant them out direct into their permanent positions.

Edible Uses:

Fruit – raw or cooked. Sweet with a pleasant blend of acid, they are very pleasant eating. About 13mm in diameter. The fruit contains about 12.6% sugar, 1% protein, 0.4% ash. Low in vitamin C, about 4.1mg per 100ml. The fruit does not keep well, only lasting in good condition for 2 – 3 days after picking. Yields from mature trees can be as high as 25kg per year, but are more often around 15.5kg.
Medicinal Uses:

Anthelmintic; Antirheumatic; Antiseptic; Aromatic; Astringent; Carminative; Febrifuge; Ophthalmic;
Rubefacient; Stimulant.

The bark is antirheumatic, antiseptic, aromatic, astringent, carminative, ophthalmic and stimulant. It has proved useful in the treatment of fevers, asthma and coughs. The juice is applied to treat rheumatism. Mixed with ginger, it is used as a rubefacient in the treatment of choler. The juice of the bark is taken internally in the treatment of catarrh and headaches, and is applied externally to cuts and wounds. A decoction of the bark is used in the treatment of fevers, asthma and diarrhoea. This decoction is boiled to form a gelatinous mass that is applied as a poultice on sprains. Combined with the bark of Quercus lanata, it is used as a decoction in the treatmnt of dysentery. The juice of the unripe fruit is used as an anthelmintic.
Other Uses:
Dye; Tannin; 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. A yellow dye is obtained from the bark. The plant is a source of tannin. (Probably the bark or the leaves.) The bark is said to contain 60 – 80% tannin. Wood – hard, close-grained. a good fuel. Used mainly for fuel, though it is sometimes used for making poles for construction.

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_esculenta

Myrica Nagi


http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Myrica+nagi

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Rubus idaeus

Botanical Name : Rubus idaeus
Family: Rosaceae
Genus: Rubus
Subgenus: Idaeobatus
Species: R. idaeus
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Rosales

Common Name :Raspberry, Red Raspberry or occasionally as European Raspberry

Habitat :Rubus idaeus is native to Europe and northern Asia and commonly cultivated in other temperate regions. It grows on moist neglected land, hedgerows and woodland edges.

Description:
Plants of Rubus idaeus are generally perennials which bear biennial stems (“canes”) from a perennial root system. In its first year, a new, unbranched stem (“primocane”) grows vigorously to its full height of 1.5-2.5 m, bearing large pinnately compound leaves with five or seven leaflets, but usually no flowers. In its second year (as a “floricane”), a stem does not grow taller, but produces several side shoots, which bear smaller leaves with three or five leaflets. The flowers are produced in late spring on short racemes on the tips of these side shoots, each flower about 1 cm diameter with five white petals. The fruit is red, edible, and sweet but tart-flavoured, produced in summer or early autumn; in botanical terminology, it is not a berry at all, but an aggregate fruit of numerous drupelets around a central core. In raspberries (various species of Rubus subgenus Idaeobatus), the drupelets separate from the core when picked, leaving a hollow fruit, whereas in blackberries and most other species of Rubus, the drupelets stay attached to the core.

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It is hardy to zone 3 and is not frost tender. It is in leaf 11-Apr It is in flower from Jun to August, and the seeds ripen from Jul to September. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees, flies, self.The plant is self-fertile.

Cultivation :
Prefers a good deep well-drained loamy soil on the acid side. Dislikes very heavy soils, light soils and alkaline soils. Prefers an open position but tolerates some shade. Plants crop less well when grown in the shade of trees though they do well in the open on a north-facing slope. Requires a position sheltered from strong winds. Prefers a pH between 6 and 6.5. Raspberries are frequently cultivated in temperate regions of the world, both in the garden and commercially, for their edible fruit. There are many named varieties able to supply fresh fruit from mid-summer to the autumn. High costs of picking the fruit means that little is actually sold fresh, most of the commercially cultivated crops either being used for preserves or grown for the ‘Pick Your Own’ trade. All the cultivars are self-fertile. This species has biennial stems, it produces a number of new stems each year from the perennial rootstock, these stems fruit in their second year and then die. It is best not to grow raspberries near blackberries or potatoes. Plants in this genus are notably susceptible to honey fungus.

Propagation:
Seed – requires stratification and is best sown in early autumn in a cold frame. Stored seed requires one month stratification at about 3°c and is best sown as early as possible in the year. Prick out the seedlings when they are large enough to handle and grow on in a cold frame. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring of the following year. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, July/August in a frame. Tip layering in July. Plant out in autumn. Division in early spring or just before leaf-fall in the autumn

Edible Uses:
Edible Parts: FruitRootStem.
Edible Uses: Coffee;  Tea.

Fruit – raw or cooked. Delicious when eaten out of hand, the fruit is also used in pies, preserves etc. Root – cooked. The root, which should be neither too young nor too old, requires a lot of boiling. Young shoots – peeled and eaten raw or cooked like asparagus. They are harvested as they emerge through the ground in the spring and whilst they are still tender. A herb tea is made from the dried leaves. Another report says that a type of tea made from raspberry and blackberry leaves is an excellent coffee substitute.

Medicinal Uses :
Antiinflammatory;  AstringentBirthing aid;  Cardiac;  Decongestant;  Oxytoxic.

Antiemetic. The leaves and roots are anti-inflammatory, astringent, decongestant, ophthalmic, oxytocic and stimulant. A tea made from them is used in the treatment of diarrhoea, as a tonic for the uterus to strengthen pregnant women, and as an aid in childbirth. The tea has also been shown as effective in relieving painful menstrual cramps. The active ingredients both stimulate and relax the uterus. They can be used during the last three months of pregnancy and during childbirth, but should not be used earlier. Externally, the leaves and roots are used as a gargle to treat tonsillitis and mouth inflammations, as a poultice and wash to treat sores, conjunctivitis, minor wounds, burns and varicose ulcers. The leaves are harvested in the summer and dried for later use. The fruit is antiscorbutic and diuretic. Fresh raspberry juice, mixed with a little honey, makes an excellent refrigerant beverage to be taken in the heat of a fever. Made into a syrup, it is said to have a beneficial effect on the heart.

The leaf is the most valuable medicinal part of the raspberry and a tea is traditionally drunk by expectant mothers during the last three months of pregnancy to strengthen the uterus and to ease painful contractions during labor as well as checking any hemorrhage.  This action will occur if the herb is drunk regularly throughout pregnancy and also taken during labor. Although the specific mode of action is unknown, the leaves are thought to strengthen the longitudinal muscles of the uterus, increasing the force of contractions and thereby hastening childbirth.  The gentle astringency of raspberry leaves is also helpful for diarrhea in children, and an infusion makes a good mouthwash for ulcers and bleeding gums. It is used to treat irregular and excessive menstruation.   Externally, the leaves and roots are used as a gargle to treat tonsillitis and mouth inflammations, as a poultice and wash to treat sores, conjunctivitis, minor wounds, burns and varicose ulcers.  The fruit is antiscorbutic and diuretic. Fresh raspberry juice, mixed with a little honey, makes an excellent refrigerant beverage to be taken in the heat of a fever. Made into a syrup, it is said to have a beneficial effect on the heart.  The fruit is nutritious and mildly astringent.

Other Uses :
Cosmetic;  Dye;  Paper.
A purple to dull blue dye is obtained from the fruit. A fibre obtained from the stems is used in making paper. The stems are harvested in the summer after the fruit has been eaten, the leaves are removed and the stems are steamed until the fibres can be stripped. The fibres are cooked for 2 hours with lye and then hand beaten with mallets or ball milled for 3 hours. The paper is light brown in colour. A decongestant face-mask made from the fruit is used cosmetically to soothe reddened skin.

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider

Resources:
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Rubus+idaeus
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rubus_idaeus
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_RST.htm

 

Trachyspermum roxburghianum(Bengali Radhuni)

Trachyspermum ammi (Daucus anisodorus, IS) US6...

Trachyspermum ammi (Daucus anisodorus, IS) US623737 (Photo credit: filibot.web)

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Botanical Name :Trachyspermum roxburghianum
Family: Apiaceae (Umbelliferae)
Genus: Trachyspermum
Species: T. roxburghianum
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Apiales

Synonyms: Pimpinella lateriflora, Pimpinella dalzellii, Carum roxburghianum

Common Name :Wild Celery • Hindi:  Ajmod • Tamil: Asamtavomam • Malayalam: Ayamodakam • Telugu: Ajumoda, Vamu • Kannada: Ajamodhavoma • Bengali: Randhuni, Shah jira • Urdu: Ajmod • Sanskrit: Ajamoda

Habitat : Native habitat of celery extends from Sweden to Egypt, Algeria and Ethiopia and in Asia, India and China. It is an annual in the planes, whereas, biennial in cold climate and on hills.

Description:
Trachyspermum roxburghianum is an erect, branched annual herb, 0.5-3 ft tall. Stems are longitudinally triped. Leaves are double-compound, ultimate segements all linear. Flowers occur in compound umbels. They have rounded white or pink petals. Fruits are ovoid, ultimately shining, yellow. Stem much branched, striate, subglabrous. Leaves alternate, pinnately compound; blade ternately pinnate or 1-2 pinnate, leaflets pinnatifid to pinnatipartite, gradually becoming nearly filiform upward. Inflorescence terminal or axillary, compound umbel; peduncle up to 8 cm long; involucral bracts 2-5, linear-lanceolate; primary rays 2-9, up to 4 cm long; secondary rays (pedicels) 5-15, up to 7 mm long. Calyx teeth 5, small or obscure. Petals 5, obcordate with broadly inflexed obtuse apices. Pistil with compressed, glandular hairy ovary. Fruit laterally compressed, ovoid to sublobose schizocarp, easily splitting into 2, one-seeded mericarps; mericarp with 5 prominent longitudinal ribs.

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It is a very Trachyspermum roxburghianum is a strong spice, with a characteristic smell similar to parsley. A couple of pinches can easily overpower a curry. In Bengali cuisine the seeds are used whole, quickly fried in very hot oil until they crackle. Flowering: December-February.

The small dried fruits, mistakenly referred to as seeds, are similar in appearance to those of ajwain, celery, and caraway. Because of their similarity in both appearance and flavor, it is often confused or substituted with celery seed.

Edible Uses:
It is a very strong spice, with a characteristic smell similar to parsley and a taste similar to celery. A couple of pinches can easily overpower a curry. In Bengali cuisine the seeds are used whole, quickly fried in very hot oil until they crackle. They are part of a local panch phoron (Bengali five spice) mixture, where they replace the more commonly used mustard seed; the other ingredients are cumin seed, fenugreek seed, fennel seed, and kalonji (often wrongly called “wild onion seed,” and known locally (though erroneously) as “black cumin seed” Nigella sativa. In other places, a common use is in pickles or spice mixtures.

Young plants are harvested and consumed fresh as side dish or added to soup. Dried whole plant with inflorescence is used aas spice to flavor curries. Highly antimutagenic (Nakahara, 2002).

Chemcial Constituents:
Seeds – Essential oil 1.8 – 2 %, ( d -limonene, a-terpene, dipentene, d-linallol, terpineol, dl-piperitone, thymoquinol, thymol and a ketonic acid, 0.09 % ) C.A. 1943, 1009  Ind.J.Pharm . 1953, 15, 298, (4 ) . Fruits – Bergapten and Carvacrol.

Medicinal Properties:
Anti-diarrhoeal
Fruit -50 % alcoholic extract in broth culture at 125 mcg / ml . is active Vs E.histolytica  . Seeds exhibited activity against E.histolytica .Ind . J . Exptl . Biol . 1968, 6, 232

Medicinal Uses:
The fresh leaves are used as an herb in Thailand and it is used medicinally in Myanmar.

Anti-tumor
Fresh leaf – Methanol extract at 200 mg / ml . showed strong activity Vs CVells Raji . EBVactivation induced by HPA ( 40 ng / ml . )

Anti-oxidant
oil produced marked diuretic effect in rabbits . Ind.J . Med . Res . 1954.

CNS
Fruit – 50 % alcoholic extract given I / P in mice at 500 mg / kg . showed neuroleptic activity  . Seeds induced hyperactivity of CNS in mice . Ind . J . Exptl . Biol . 1968, 6, 232

Diuretic
oil produced marked diuretic effect in rabbits . Ind.J . Med . Res . 1954,

Cardiovascular
Fruits left after extraction of essential oil showed marked cardiotonic activity . . Ind.J . Med . Res . 1954, 42, 389  . Etherextract showed antiasggregating effect against platelet aggregation bt arachidonic acid .pro0bably due to effect on throboxane production Prostaglandin LeukotEssen.fatty acids, 1988 .

Hypotensive
Essential oil and crystalline substance loweredblood pressure in dogs and ratsdue to direct action on blood vessels . Ind.J . Med .  1954, 42, 389.

Spasmolytic
Seeds – Ketonic compound showed antispasmodic actvity particularly on smooth muscle of rabbit gut ., Ind.J.Pharm .1953, Ind.J . Med .1954.

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://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radhuni
http://www.ayurnepal.com/en/trachyspermum-roxburghianum.html
http://herbsgujarat.tripod.com/images/trachyspermum.gif
http://www.flowersofindia.net/catalog/slides/Wild%20Celery.html

Raphanus sativus

Botanical Name : Raphanus sativus
Family: Brassicaceae– Mustard family
Genus: Raphanus L.– radish
Species: Raphanus sativus L.– cultivated radish
Kingdom:Plantae– Plants
Subkingdom: Tracheobionta– Vascular plants
Superdivision: Spermatophyta– Seed plants
Division: Magnoliophyta– Flowering plants
Class: Magnoliopsida– Dicotyledons
Subclass: Dilleniidae
Order: Capparales

Synonyms: Raphanus raphanistrum sativus – (L.) G. Beck.

Common Name :Radish

Habitat :The origin of Raphanus sativus is not found, it is a plant  of cultivation. It probably arose through cultivation.

Description:
Raphanus sativus is an annual herb growing to 0.45m by 0.2m at a fast rate.
It is hardy to zone 0 and is not frost tender. It is in flower from June to August, and the seeds ripen from July to September. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees, flies.

You may click to see the picture

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

Cultivation :
Very easily cultivated fast-growing plants which prefer a rich light soil with ample moisture. They dislike very heavy or acid soils. Plants are susceptible to drought and require irrigation during dry spells in the summer or the root quality will rapidly deteriorate and the plant will go to seed. Radishes are widely cultivated for their edible roots. There are many named variet that are able to supply edible roots all year round. Over the centuries a number of distinct groups have evolved through cultivation, these have been classified by the botanists as follows. A separate entry has been made for each group:- R. sativus. The common radish. Fast maturing plants with small roots that can be round or cylindrical and usually have red skins. They are grown primarily for their roots which in some varieties can be ready within three weeks from sowing the seed and are used mainly in salads. These are mainly grown for spring, summer and autumn use and can produce a crop within a few weeks of sowing. R. sativus caudatus. The rat-tailed radishes. This group does not produce roots of good quality, it is cultivated mainly for the edible young seedpods which are harvested in the summer. R. sativus niger. The Oriental and Spanish radishes. These are grown for their larger edible root which can be round or cylindrical and can be available throughout the winter. R. sativus oleiformis. The fodder radishes. These are grown mainly for their leaves and oil-rich seeds, they are used as a green manure or stock feed though they can also be eaten by people. The roots of these plants soon become fibrous, though they make acceptable eating when young. Radishes are a good companion plant for lettuces, nasturtiums, peas and chervil, tomatoes and cucumbers. They are said to repel cucumber beetles if planted near cucumber plants and they also repel the vine borers which attack squashes, marrows and courgettes. They grow badly with hyssop and with grape vines.

Propagation:
Seed – sow outdoors in situ in succession from late winter to the middle of summer. Germination takes place within a few days of sowing the seed. If you want a constant supply of the roots then you need to sow seed every 2 – 3 weeks

Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Flowers; Leaves; Root; Seed; Seedpod.

Edible Uses: Oil.
Young leaves – raw or cooked. A somewhat hot taste, and the texture is somewhat coarse. As long as they are young, they make an acceptable addition in small quantities to chopped salads and are a reasonable cooked green[K]. A nutritional analysis is available. Young flower clusters – raw or cooked. A spicy flavour with a crisp pleasant texture, they make a nice addition to salads or can be used as a broccoli substitute. Seeds – raw. The seed can be soaked for 12 hours in warm water and then allowed to sprout for about 6 days. They have a hot spicy flavour and go well in salads. Young seedpods – raw. Crisp and juicy with a mildly hot flavour. They must be eaten when young because they quickly become tough and fibrous. Root – raw or cooked. Crisp and juicy, they have a hot and spicy flavour and are a very popular addition to salads. The summer crops do not store well and should be used as soon as possible after harvesting. The winter varieties (including the Japanese forms) have much larger roots and often a milder flavour. These store well and can be either harvested in early winter for storage or be harvested as required through the winter. An edible oil is obtained from the seed.

Composition:
Figures in grams (g) or miligrams (mg) per 100g of food.

Leaves (Dry weight) : 287 Calories per 100g
*Water: 0%
*Protein: 28.7g; Fat: 5.2g; Carbohydrate: 49.6g; Fibre: 9.6g; Ash: 16.5g;
*Minerals – Calcium: 1913mg; Phosphorus: 261mg; Iron: 35.7mg; Magnesium: 0mg; Sodium: 956mg; Potassium: 4348mg; Zinc: 0mg;
*Vitamins – A: 21mg; Thiamine (B1): 0.7mg; Riboflavin (B2): 2.43mg; Niacin: 34.8mg; B6: 0mg; C: 704mg;

Notes: Vitamin A is mg not IU

Medicinal Uses:
Anthelmintic; Antibacterial; Antifungal; Antiscorbutic; Antispasmodic; Astringent; Cancer; Carminative; Cholagogue; Digestive; Diuretic; Expectorant; Laxative; Poultice; Stomachic.

Radishes have long been grown as a food crop, but they also have various medicinal actions. The roots stimulate the appetite and digestion, having a tonic and laxative effect upon the intestines and indirectly stimulating the flow of bile. Consuming radish generally results in improved digestion, but some people are sensitive to its acridity and robust action. The plant is used in the treatment of intestinal parasites, though the part of the plant used is not specified. The leaves, seeds and old roots are used in the treatment of asthma and other chest complaints. The juice of the fresh leaves is diuretic and laxative. The seed is carminative, diuretic, expectorant, laxative and stomachic. It is taken internally in the treatment of indigestion, abdominal bloating, wind, acid regurgitation, diarrhoea and bronchitis. The root is antiscorbutic, antispasmodic, astringent, cholagogue, digestive and diuretic. It is crushed and used as a poultice for burns, bruises and smelly feet. Radishes are also an excellent food remedy for stone, gravel and scorbutic conditions. The root is best harvested before the plant flowers. Its use is not recommended if the stomach or intestines are inflamed. The plant contains raphanin, which is antibacterial and antifungal. It inhibits the growth of Staphylococcus aureus, E. coli, streptococci, Pneumococci etc. The plant also shows anti-tumour activity.

Radish root stimulates the appetite and digestion.  The common red radish is eaten as a salad vegetable and an appetizer.  The juice of the black radish is drunk to counter gassy indigestion and constipation.  Radish juice has a tonic and laxative action on the intestines and indirectly stimulates the flow of bile.  Consuming radish generally results in improved digestion, but some people are sensitive to its acridity and robust action. It is crushed and used as a poultice for burns, bruises and smelly feet. The leaves, seeds and old roots are used in the treatment of asthma and other chest complaints.  The juice of the fresh leaves is diuretic and laxative.  In China, radish is eaten to relive abdominal distension.  The root is also prepared “dry-fried” to treat chest problems.  The seed is used to treat abdominal fullness, sour eructations, diarrhea caused by food congestion, phlegm with productive cough and wheezing.  Because of its neutral energy, it is very effective in breaking up congestion in patients with extreme heat.  Radishes are also an excellent food remedy for stone, gravel and scorbutic conditions. The plant contains raphanin, which is antibacterial and antifungal. It inhibits the growth of Staphylococcuc aureus, E. coli, streptococci, pneumococci etc. The plant also shows anti-tumor activity.

Other Uses:
Green manure; Oil; Repellent.

The growing plant repels beetles from tomatoes and cucumbers. It is also useful for repelling various other insect pests such as carrot root fly. There is a fodder variety that grows more vigorously and is used as a green manure.

.

Known Hazards: The Japanese radishes have higher concentrations of glucosinolate, a substance that acts against the thyroid gland. It is probably best to remove the skin.

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://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Raphanus_sativus
http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=RASA2
http://species.wikimedia.org/wiki/Raphanus_sativus
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_RST.htm

Musa acuminata

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Botanical Name :Musa acuminata
Family: Musaceae
Genus: Musa
Species: M. acuminata
Kingdom: Plantae
clade: Angiosperms
clade: Monocots
clade: Commelinids
Order: Zingiberales

Common Name :Wild banana

Habitat :Musa acuminata is  native to Southeast Asia.(E. Asia – Southern China, India, Malaysia and the Phillipines.) It grows in Shaded and moist ravines, marshlands, semi-marshlands and slopes from near sea level to 1200 metres.

Description:
Musa acuminata are perennial herbs (not trees) growing to 3m. The trunk (known as the pseudostem) is made of tightly packed layers of leaf sheaths emerging from completely or partially buried corms.

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The inflorescence of Musa acuminata grows horizontally or obliquely from the trunk. The individual flowers are white to yellowish-white in color and are negatively geotropic (that is, growing upwards and away from the ground). Both male and female flowers are present in a single inflorescence. Female flowers located near the base (and develop into fruit), and the male flowers located at the tipmost top-shaped bud in between leathery bract
The rather slender fruits are berries, the size of each depends on the number of seeds they contain. Each fruit can have 15 to 62 seeds. Each fruit bunch can have an average of 161.76 ± 60.62 fingers with each finger around 2.4 cm (0.94 in) by 9 cm (3.5 in) in size.

The seeds of Musa acuminata are around 5 to 6 mm (0.20 to 0.24 in) in diameter. They are subglobose or angular in shape and very hard. The tiny embryo is located at the end of the micropyle. Each seed of Musa acuminata typically produce around four times its size in edible starchy pulp (the parenchyma, the portion of the bananas we eat), around 0.23 cm3 (0.014 cu in). The ratio increases dramatically for the ‘seedless’ modern edible cultivars. The much reduced in size and sterile seeds are now surrounded by 23 times its size in edible pulp. The seeds themselves are reduced to tiny black specks along the central axis of the fruit

It is hardy to zone 9 and is frost tender. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs)
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 moist soil.

Cultivation:
Requires a sunny sheltered position in a well-drained fertile soil with a pH between 6 and 7.5. This species is able to tolerate light frosts, but it requires a very sheltered position. Another report says that it requires a minimum winter temperature of 10°c and no lower than 18°c when the fruit is ripening. Wild plants are diploid (2n = 22) and bear fruits containing numerous seeds making them inedible. Cultivated plants are triploid (2n = 33) and bear seedless, edible fruits; such plants have been called M. acuminata ‘Dwarf Cavendish’ (M. cavendishii Lambert ex Paxton; M. chinensis Sweet; M. nana Loureiro).

Propagation:
Seed – sow the large seed in individual pots in the spring in a warm greenhouse at about 20°c[200]. Grow the seedlings on in a rich soil, giving occasional liquid feeds. Keep the plants in the greenhouse for at least three years before trying them outdoors. Division of suckers in late spring. Dig up the suckers with care, trying to cause the least disturbance to the main plant. Pot them up and grow them on in a lightly shaded position in a greenhouse until they are well established.

Edible Uses:
Edible Parts: Fruit.

Fruit – raw or dried for later use. Sweet. The fruit is up to 12cm long and 2.5cm wide.

Medicinal Uses :
Banana Lectin BanLec linked to anti-cancer and anti-HIV properties.

Bananas have been present in our diets since long time ago, they are rich in potassium, a mineral that plays a very important role in mass bone formation and regulation of blood pressure, magnesium, selenium, phosphorous, iron, vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, vitamin C, vitamin E, zinc (very important to regulate sleep cycles and enhance male reproductive functions)…etc.

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?Musa+acuminata
http://www.plantoftheweek.org/week022.shtml

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Musa_acuminata
http://www.herbcyclopedia.com/index.php?option=com_zoo&task=tag&tag=Musa%20acuminata%20Colla&app_id=5&Itemid=193

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