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Herbs & Plants (Spices)

Androsace sarmentosa

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Botanical Name: Androsace sarmentosa
Family: Primulaceae
Genus: Androsace
Species: A. sarmentosa
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Ericales

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Synonyms:

*Androsace chumbyi Pax & R. Knuth
*Androsace dubyi (Dergnac) N.P. Balakr.
*Androsace sarmentosa var. chumbyi auct.
*Androsace sarmentosa var. duby Dergnac
*Primula sarmentosa Kuntze
*Primula sarmentosa (Wall.) Bennet & Raizada
Common Name: Rock Jasmine

Habitat : Androsace sarmentosa is native to E. Asia – Himalayas from Sikkim to Kashmir. It grows in mixed forests and grassy slopes at elevations of 2800 – 4000 metres.

Description:
Androsace sarmentosa is a perennial herb. It can grows to about 30 centimetres (12 in) in diameter.
This plant forms deep-green evergreen compact rosettes of elliptic-oblanceolate leaves, 1–3 centimetres (0.39–1.18 in) in width, covered with short white hairs. Flowers are bright pink to purple with a yellow centre, 7–9 millimetres (0.28–0.35 in) in diameter, with umbels 4–10 millimetres (0.16–0.39 in) tall. They bloom from June to August.

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The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs)Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. Suitable pH: basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very alkaline soils.
It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers dry or moist soil.
Cultivation:
Requires a very well-drained light or sandy alkaline soil of low nutrient status and with the addition of limestone chippings if necessary. Usually best in full sun, though in hot-summer areas it can be better if given some shade, especially from the hottest sun. Grows well on dry stone walls, or as a low ground cover, and tolerates hot humid summers.

Propagation:
Seed – requires a period of cold stratification. Where possible, the seed is best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame – all watering should be from the bottom of the pot. The seed can take 2 years to germinate, prick out the seedlings into individual pots as soon as they are large enough to handle and grow on in a partially shaded cold frame. Plant out in late spring or early summer. Division of runners in early summer. Pot them up into a sandy compost and grow them on until they are well-rooted before planting them into their permanent positions
Medicinal Uses:
The entire plant is used in Tibetan medicine, it is said to have a bitter taste and a cooling and coarsening potency. A resolutive, it dries up serous fluids. It is used in the treatment of disorders from tumours, inflammations of fluids and other serous fluid disorders.

Other Uses:  The plant can be used as a low-growing ground cover.

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/Androsace_sarmentosa
http://pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Androsace+sarmentosa

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Herbs & Plants (Spices)

Asarum maximum

Botanical Name: Asarum maximum
Family: Aristolochiaceae
Genus: Asarum
Species: A. maximum
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Piperales

Common Name : Ling Ling Panda Face Ginger

Habitat :Asarum maximum is native to E. Asia – China in Hubei and E. Sichuan. It grows in the forests in humus rich soils at elevations of 600 – 800 metres.

Description:
Asarum maximum is a perennial herb growing to 0.5 m (1ft 8in).
This clumping species from China has large, 6″, glossy, rounded arrowhead-shaped, green leaves. It is certainly best-known for its stunning flowers (often the subject of fine paintings). It is in flower from May to June. The 2″ flower is velvet-black outside with a stunning white interior. This easy-to-grow species really responds well to rich humus-laden soils and high fertility. A well-grown 10″ tall x 18″ wide clump of Asarum maximum ‘Green Panda’ is simply stunning as well as deer-resistant .

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The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Flies.Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in full shade (deep woodland) or semi-shade (light woodland). It prefers moist soil.

Cultivation:
Prefers a rich moist neutral to acid soil in woodland or a shady position in the rock garden[1, 200]. Plants are hardy to at least -15°c. The flowers are malodorous and are pollinated by flies. Plants often self-sow when growing in a suitable position.

Propagation:
Seed – best sown in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe in the summer. Stored seed will require 3 weeks cold stratification and should be sown in late winter. The seed usually germinates in the spring in 1 – 4 or more weeks at 18°c. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in light shade in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out when large enough in late spring. Division in spring or autumn. Plants are slow to increase. It is best to pot the divisions up and keep them in light shade in the greenhouse until they are growing away strongly.

Medicinal Uses:
The dried plant is used medicinally in Vietnam. The leaves ate used in the treatment of dyspepsia and colic whilst the flowers and roots are used as a reconstituent. Analgesic, expectorant. Used as a gargle for sore throats etc
Known Hazards: Although no reports of toxicity have been found for this plant, at least 3 other members of this genus have reports that the leaves are toxic. Some caution is therefore advised in the use of this plant.

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/Asarum_maximum
http://pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Asarum+maximum
Asarum maximum Ling Ling

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Asarum forbesii

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Botanical Name: Asarum forbesii
Family: Aristolochiaceae
Genus: Asarum
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Piperales

Common Name: Du Heng

Habitat :Asarum forbesii is native to E. Asia – C. China.It hails from moist woodland valleys below 2,500′ in the Chinese provinces of Anhui, Henan, Hubei, Jiangsu, Jiangxi, Sichuan, and Zhejiang. It grows on moist shady places in forests in valleys at elevations under under 800 metres.
Description:
Asarum forbesii is a perennial herb growing to 0.2 m (0ft 6in).
In the garden, Asarum forbesii ‘Mercury’ resembles a smaller Asarum arifolium, making a slowly expanding clump composed of 3″ wide, heart-shaped leaves of green, highlighted by attractive silver blotches. From April through June (NC), the foliage covers the basal clusters of small liver-colored flowers.

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Rhizomes vertical, 1-2 mm in diam., internodes 0.5-1 cm. Leaves solitary; petiole 3-15 cm, glabrous; leaf blade adaxially dark green with white blotches along midvein, broadly cordate to reniform-cordate, 3-8 × 3-8 cm, abaxial surface glabrous, adaxial surface with short hairs along midvein, base cordate, lateral lobes 1-3 × 1.5-3.5 cm, apex obtuse to rounded; cataphylls reniform-cordate or obovate, ca. 1 × 1 cm. Peduncle ascending, 1-2 cm. Calyx dark purple, cylindric to campanulate, 1.5-2.5 × ca. 1 cm; sepals connate beyond attachment to ovary, abaxially glabrous; tube subcylindric, 1-1.5 × 0.8-1 cm, not constricted at throat, adaxially tessellate, orifice ring less than 1 mm wide; lobes broadly ovate, 0.5-0.7 × 0.5-0.7 cm, base smooth. Stamens 12; filaments much shorter than anthers; connectives slightly extended beyond anthers, rounded. Ovary half-inferior. Styles free, apex 2-lobed; stigmas lateral. Fl. Apr-May.

The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Flies.Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in full shade (deep woodland) or semi-shade (light woodland).

Cultivation:
We have very little information on this species and do not know if it will be hardy in Britain, though judging by its native range it should succeed outdoors in many parts of this country. The following notes are based on the general needs of the genus. Prefers a rich moist neutral to acid soil in woodland or a shady position in the rock garden. Plants are hardy to at least -15°c. The flowers are malodorous and are pollinated by flies.   Plants often self-sow when growing in a suitable position.

Propagation:
Seed – best sown in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe in the summer. Stored seed will require 3 weeks cold stratification and should be sown in late winter. The seed usually germinates in the spring in 1 – 4 or more weeks at 18°c. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in light shade in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out when large enough in late spring. Division in spring or autumn. Plants are slow to increase. It is best to pot the divisions up and keep them in light shade in the greenhouse until they are growing away strongly.
Medicinal Uses: The root is used in the treatment of goitre, cough, fever and worms. Continued use of this plant gives the body a fragrant odour

Known Hazards: Although no reports of toxicity have been found for this plant, at least 3 other members of this genus have reports that the leaves are toxic. Some caution is therefore advised in the use of this plant.

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/Asarum
http://www.efloras.org/florataxon.aspx?flora_id=2&taxon_id=200006649
Asarum forbesii Mercury
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Asarum+forbesii

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Herbs & Plants (Spices)

Asarum caudatum

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Botanical Name : Asarum caudatum
Family: Aristolochiaceae
Genus: Asarum
Species: A. caudatum
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Piperales

Synonyms: Asarum hookeri Fielding & Gardner, Asarum rotundifolium Raf.

Common Names: British Columbia wild ginger, western wild ginger, or long-tailed wild ginger.

Habitat :Asarum caudatum is native to Western N. America – British Columbia to California. It grows on deep shade in moist pine woods and redwood forests. Understory of conifer forests, usually in mesic or wet places from sea level to 1200 metres and occasionally to 2200 metres.

Description:
Asarum caudatum is an evergreen Perennial growing to 0.1 m (0ft 4in) by 0.3 m (1ft) at a fast rate. It is in leaf 12-Jan It is in flower from Jul to August. The flowers are distinct, hirsute (hairy), cup-shaped, and brown-purple to green-yellow which terminate in three, long, gracefully curved lobes, often concealed by leaves. The long rhizomes give rise to persistent reniform (kidney/heart shaped) leaves. Leaves are found in colonies or clusters as the rhizome spreads, forming mats. The leaves emit a ginger aroma when rubbed.

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The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Flies.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 full shade (deep woodland) or semi-shade (light woodland). It prefers moist soil.

Cultivation:
Prefers a rich moist neutral to acid soil in woodland or a shady position in the rock garden. Plants are hardy to at least -15°c. The flowers are malodorous and are pollinated by flies. Plants often self-sow when growing in a suitable position. Special Features:Attractive foliage, North American native, Fragrant foliage, Inconspicuous flowers or blooms.

Propagation:
Seed – best sown in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe in the summer. Stored seed will require 3 weeks cold stratification and should be sown in late winter. The seed usually germinates in the spring in 1 – 4 or more weeks at 18°c. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in light shade in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out when large enough in late spring. Division in spring or autumn. Plants are slow to increase. It is best to pot the divisions up and keep them in light shade in the greenhouse until they are growing away strongly.
Edible Uses: Condiment; Tea.
The root can be used as a ginger substitute. The root has a pungent, aromatic smell like mild pepper and ginger mixed, but more strongly aromatic. It can be harvested all year round, but is best in the autumn. It can also be dried for later use. Leaves are a tea substitute.

Medicinal Uses:
The root is laxative, stomachic and tonic. A tea made from the root is used in the treatment of colds, colic, indigestion and stomach pains. The root is harvested in the autumn and dried for later use. The whole plant is analgesic, antirheumatic, appetizer and tonic. A decoction is used externally to treat headaches, intestinal pain and knee pains. A poultice made from the heated leaves is applied to boils, skin infections and toothaches, whilst a decoction of the leaves is used as a wash on sores.

Other Uses :
A useful ground-cover plant for deep shade, spreading by its roots.Landscape Uses:Ground cover, Woodland garden.

Known Hazards : Although no reports of toxicity have been found for this plant, at least 3 other members of this genus have reports that the leaves are toxic. Some caution is therefore advised in the use of this plant.

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/Asarum_caudatum
http://www.pfaf.org/user/plant.aspx?latinname=Asarum+caudatum

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Herbs & Plants (Spices)

Arum dioscoridis

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Botanical Name : Arum dioscoridis
Family: Araceae
Genus: Arum
Species: A. dioscoridis
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Alismatales

Synonyms : A. hygrophyllum. Boiss.

Habitat :Arum dioscoridis is native to forests in the east of the Mediterranean in southern Turkey, Cyprus, and the Middle East.It grows in hedges and rocky places, often on calcareous soils.
Description:
Arum dioscoridis is a perennial plant growing to 0.3 m (1ft) by 0.3 m (1ft in). It is not frost tender. In winter appear green, arrow-shaped leaves. In spring, the short-stalked inflorescence appears consisting of a black, rod-shaped spadix surrounded by a yellow-green, purple-mottled brown or even purple bract (spathe). The female flowers are located at the bottom of the spadix; above are the male flowers; and the top is a sterile area (appendix). The spadix emits a pungent smell that attracts flies as pollinators.

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It is in leaf 7-Oct It is in flower in May. The flowers are monoecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but both sexes can be found on the same plant) and are pollinated by Flies.Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in full shade (deep woodland) semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil.
Cultivation:
Prefers a humus rich soil and abundant water in the growing season. Grows well in woodland conditions. Succeeds in sun or shade. This species is not hardy in the colder areas of the country, it tolerates temperatures down to between -5 and -10°c. Because it comes into growth in the late autumn it is best grown by a warm wall or in a bulb frame A polymorphic species. The inflorescence is pollinated by flies and it smells of dung and carrion in order to attract the flies. It also has the remarkable ability to heat itself above the ambient air temperature to such a degree that it is quite noticeable to the touch. This probably protects the flowers from damage by frost, or allows it to penetrate frozen ground. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer.

Propagation:
Seed – best sown in a greenhouse or cold frame as soon as it is ripe. The seed usually germinates in 1 – 6 months at 15°c. Stored seed should be sown in the spring in a greenhouse and can be slow to germinate, sometimes taking a year or more. A period of cold stratification might help to speed up the process. Sow the seed thinly, and allow the seedlings to grow on without disturbance for their first year, giving occasional liquid feeds to ensure that they do not become mineral deficient. When the plants are dormant in the autumn, divide up the small corms, planting 2 – 3 in each pot, and grow them on in light shade in the greenhouse for a further year, planting out when dormant in the autumn. Division of the corms in summer after flowering. Larger corms can be planted out direct into their permanent positions, though it is best to pot up the smaller corms and grow them on for a year in a cold frame before planting them out.

Edible Uses :
Edible Parts: Root…..Tuber – cooked and used as a vegetable. It must be thoroughly dried or cooked before being eaten, see the notes above on toxicity.
Medicinal Uses : Abortifacient….The root is abortifacient.
Other Uses:
The plant can be grown as an ornamental plant in rock gardens Mediterranean regions. In the Benelux, the plant can be grown indoors as a pot plant. The plant can be propagated by seeding.

Known Hazards: The plant contains calcium oxylate crystals. These cause an extremely unpleasant sensation similar to needles being stuck into the mouth and tongue if they are eaten, but they are easily neutralized by thoroughly drying or cooking the plant or by steeping it in water.

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=Arum+dioscoridis
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arum_dioscoridis