Herbs & Plants (Spices)

Aconitum gammiei

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Botanical Name; Aconitum gammiei
Aconitum gammiei

*Aconitum wallichianum Lauener
*Aconitum huizenense TL Ming
*Aconitum Dissectum D. Don

Habitat : Aconitum gammiei is native to E. Asia – Himalayas. It grows on the alpine shrubberies and open slopes, 3300 – 4800 metres from C. Nepal to S.E. Tibet.

Aconitum gammiei is a perennial herb. Stem 75–100 cm tall, branched, basally retrorse pubescent, apically glabrous. Middle cauline leaves long petiolate; petiole to 6 cm; leaf blade subpentagonal, to 9 × 10 cm, both surfaces subglabrous, base cordate, 3-sect; central segment rhombic, pinnately parted to midvein, ultimate lobes narrowly triangular to linear; lateral ones obliquely flabellate, 3-sect. Inflorescence terminal, 6–9 cm, 3–5-flowered; rachis and pedicels glabrous; bracts leaflike. Pedicels 1.5–7.5 cm, with 2 bracteoles proximally or distally; bracteoles leaflike or lanceolate. Sepals blue-purple, glabrous abaxially; lower sepals elliptic; lateral sepals obliquely orbicular-obovate, 1.2–2 cm; upper sepal navicular-galeate, 1.8–2 cm high, 1.2–1.8 cm from base to beak, lower margin concave. Petals ca. 2.4 cm; limb ca. 1 cm, sparsely pubescent; lip ca. 5.5 mm. Stamens sparsely pubescent; filaments entire or 2-denticulate. Carpels 5, glabrous. The plant is polinated by bees and it blooms in September.

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

We have very little information on this species and do not know if it will be hardy in Britain, though judging by the native range of the plant it should succeed outdoors in many parts of the country. 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. Grows well in open woodlands. Members of this genus seem to be immune to the predations of rabbits and deer. A greedy plant, inhibiting the growth of nearby species, especially legumes.

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:
The root is stomachic. The juice of the roots is used in the treatment of stomach aches. This is a very poisonous plant and should only be used with extreme caution and under the supervision of a qualified practitioner.

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 supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.


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