Pulsatilla vulgaris

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Botanical Name : Pulsatilla vulgaris
Family:Ranunculaceae
Genus:Pulsatilla
Species:P. vulgaris
Kingdom:Plantae
Division:Magnoliophyta
Class:Magnoliopsida
Order:Ranunculales

Common Name :Pasque flower, Pasqueflower, Common pasque flower, Dane’s blood

Habitat:Pulsatilla vulgaris native to  Europe.It is  found locally on calcareous grassland.It grows in sparsely wooded pine forests or meadows, often on a sunny sloping side with calcium-rich soil. A large colony occurs on publicly accessible land in the Cotswolds, at the Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust’s Pasqueflower reserve.

Description:
Pulsatilla vulgaris is an herbaceous perennial plant. It develops upright rhizomes, which function as food-storage organs. Its leaves and stems are long, soft, silver-grey and hairy. It grows to 15–30 cm high and when it is fruit-bearing up to 40 cm. The roots go deep into the soil (to 1 m). The finely-dissected leaves are arranged in a rosette and appear with the bell-shaped flower in early spring. The purple flowers are followed by distinctive silky seed-heads which can persist on the plant for many months. The flower is ‘cloaked in myth’; one legend has it that Pasque flowers sprang up in places that had been soaked by the blood of Romans or Danes because they often appear on old barrows and boundary banks.

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Different varities of Pulsatilla vulgaris are available, while the main variety of Pulsatilla vulgaris has purplish flowers; variants include red (Rubra) and white (Alba) forms (see images).

Medicinal Uses:
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, pulsatilla is used as an anti-inflammatory and is considered specific for amoebic and bacterial dysentery.  Externally, it is used as a douche for trichomonas.
Western herbalists and homeopaths, on the other hand, use minute doses of pulsatilla as an important remedy for premenstrual syndrome.  Curiously, mainly fair and blue-eyed women are responsive to this remedy. It is generally used as an emmenagogue and to increase blood and energy circulation for both men and women.  It strengthens sexual sensitivity while lessening the tendency towards morbid preoccupation.  It is a good remedy to consider for disorders of the reproductive organs and the prostate, associated with nervous and emotional problems.  Characteristically, the symptoms treated are nervousness, restlessness and an active imagination or fear of impending danger or disease.  For menstrual irregularity or delayed menstruation, it is used to treat simple suppression due to atropy or shock.  It is also good for some cases of heart disease, again with strong mental symptoms.

Pulsatilla is used for various inflammatory conditions, but especially if accompanied by nervousness, despondency, sadness, unnatural fear, weepiness and depression.  It is used also for headache, insomnia, neuralgia in the anemic, thick tongue coating with a greasy taste, stomach disorders from over-indulgence in fats and pastries, various alternating and shifting signs such as diarrhea/constipation, amenorrhea and dysmenorrhea, pain from exposure to wind, toothache and styes.
In France, it has traditionally been used for treating coughs and as a sedative for sleep difficulties.  Pulsatilla is also used to treat eye problems such as cataracts.

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pulsatilla_vulgaris
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_OPQ.htm

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