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Herbs & Plants

Nymphaea odorata

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Botanical Name: Nymphaea odorata
Family: Nymphaeaceae
Genus: Nymphaea
Species: N. odorata
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Nymphaeales

Synonyms: Sweet Water Lily. Sweet-scented Water Lily. Water Nymph. Large White Water Lily.

Common Names: American white waterlily, beaver root, fragrant white water lily, fragrant waterlily, white water lily, sweet-scented white water lily, and sweet-scented water lily

Part Used for medicines: The fresh root.
Habitat: Nymphaea odorata commonly be found in shallow lakes, ponds, and permanent slow moving waters throughout North America where it ranges from Central America to northern Canada. It is also reported from Brazil and Guyana.
Description:
Nymphaea odorata is a perennial aquatic herb, grows to the surface of the water from a thick horizontal root-stock, stem absent, flowers growing on long peduncles and the leaves on separate petioles. Stipules deltoid or nearly reniform, emarginate; leaves always floating orbicular, smooth, and shining, dark green above, wine-colour beneath. Flowers large white, showy and fragrant, often 6 inches in diameter; sepals four elliptical scaphoid, nearly free; petals numerous; stamens indefinite; ovary large globular, depressed, eighteen to twenty-four-celled. Fruit a depressed globular, fleshy body; seeds oblong, stipulate. The flowers open as the sun rises, after a few hours gradually closing, being entirely closed during the midday heat and at night.

CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES
This plant is rooted from a branched rhizomes which gives rise to long petioles which terminate in smooth floating leaves. Since the leaves are subject to tearing by water and waves, they are round with a waxy upper coating that is water-repellent. The flowers also float. They are radially symmetric with prominent yellow stamens and many white petals. The flowers open each day and close again each night and are very fragrant. Once the flowers are pollinated, the developing fruit is pulled back under water for maturation.

It is cultivated in aquatic gardens as an ornamental plant. It is invasive and weedy on the west coast of North America.

Edible Uses:
The fragrant water-lily has both medicinal and edible parts. The seeds, leaves, flowers and rhizomes can all be eaten.

Constituents: The roots contain tannin, gallic acid and mucilage, starch, gum, resin, sugar, ammonia, tartaric acid, fecula, etc.

Chemical Compositions: The lignans nymphaeoside A and icariside E, and the flavonols kaempferol 3-O-alpha-l-rhamnopyranoside (afzelin), quercetin 3-O-alpha-l-rhamnopyranoside (quercitrin), myricetin 3-O-alpha-l-rhamnopyranoside (myricitrin), quercetin 3-O-(6′-O-acetyl)-beta-d-galactopyranoside, myricetin 3-O-beta-d-galactopyranoside and myricetin 3-O-(6′-O-acetyl)-beta-d-galactopyranoside can be found in N. odorata

Medicinal Uses:
The root is astringent, demulcent, anodyne, and antiscrofulous, used in dysentery, diarrhoea,gonorrhoea, and leucorrhoea externally. The leaves and roots have been used in form of poultice to boils, tumours, scrofulous ulcers and inflamed skin; the infusion is used as a gargle for ulcers in the mouth and throat. The rhizomes were also used by first nations to treat coughs and colds. The stem could be used to treat tooth aches if placed directly on the tooth.

The roots, in decoction, were much esteemed by Indian squaws as an internal remedy, and injection and wash for the worst forms of leukorrhea, its properties in this direction being due to its astringency.  A tea made from the roots is used in the treatment of TB, chronic bronchial complaints, diarrhea, dysentery, gastrointestinal inflammation, gonorrhea, vaginal discharge, inflamed glands, mouth sores and to stop bleeding.  A poultice made from the roots is used in the treatment of swellings, boils, tumors, inflamed skin, vaginitis etc. The roots are harvested in the autumn once the plant has died down, and are dried for later use.  A complete cure of uterine cancer by a decoction and uterine injection has been recorded.   Very effective in dropsy, kidney troubles, catarrh of the bladder, or irritation of the prostate. Excellent for infant bowel troubles.  Heals inflamed gums. Externally, a poultice of the macerated root and/or leaves made for painful swellings, boils, ulcers, wounds, and cuts. Apply the powdered root, combined with flaxseed, as a poultice  to suppurating glands; its styptic properties were also fully known and utilized.  A tea made from the root makes a good gargle for irritation and/or inflammation in the mouth and throat, used as an eyewash, and a vaginal douche. As a lotion, it helps heal sores, makes skin soft and smooth. Both root and leaves are sometimes made into poultices for wounds, cuts, and bruises. A folk tradition, a mixture of root and lemon juice was used to remove freckles and pimples.
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.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/l/lilwhi26.html
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nymphaea_odorata

http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_UZ.htm

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Herbs & Plants

Elaeagnus angustifolia

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Botanical Name : Elaeagnus angustifolia
Family: Elaeagnaceae
Genus: Elaeagnus
Species: E. angustifolia
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Rosales

Common Name :Russian silverberry, oleaster, or Russian-olive

Habitat : Elaeagnus angustifolia is  native to western and central Asia, from southern Russia and Kazakhstan to Turkey and Iran. It is now also widely established in North America as an introduced species.It grows by  side of  streams and along river banks to 3000 metres in Turkey

Description:

Elaeagnus angustifolia is a deciduous Shrub growing to 7 m (23ft) by 7 m (23ft) at a medium rate.
It is not frost tender. It is in flower in June, and the seeds ripen from Sep to October. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees.It can fix Nitrogen.
Elaeagnus angustifolia is a usually thorny shrub or small tree growing to 5–7 m in height. Its stems, buds, and leaves have a dense covering of silvery to rusty scales. The leaves are alternate, lanceolate, 4–9 cm long and 1-2.5 cm broad, with a smooth margin. The highly aromatic flowers, produced in clusters of 1-3, are 1 cm long with a four-lobed creamy yellow corolla; they appear in early summer and are followed by clusters of fruit, a small cherry-like drupe 1-1.7 cm long, orange-red covered in silvery scales. The fruits are edible and sweet, though with a dryish, mealy texture. Its common name comes from its similarity in appearance to the olive (Olea europaea), in a different botanical family, Oleaceae.

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The shrub can fix nitrogen in its roots, enabling it to grow on bare mineral substrates.

Cultivation :
Elaeagnus angustifolia was described as Zizyphus cappadocica by John Gerard, was certainly grown by John Parkinson by 1633,  and was being grown in Germany in 1736. It is now widely grown across southern and central Europe as a drought-resistant ornamental plant for its scented flowers, edible fruit, attractive silver foliage, and black bark.

The species was introduced into North America in the late 19th century, and subsequently escaped cultivation, because its fruits, which seldom ripen in England, are relished by birds which disperse the seeds. Russian-olive is considered to be an invasive species in many places in the United States because it thrives on poor soil, has low seedling mortality rates, matures in a few years, and outcompetes wild native vegetation. It often invades riparian habitats where overstory cottonwoods have died.

Propagation:
Establishment and reproduction of Elaeagnus angustifolia is primarily by seed, although some spread by vegetative propagation also occurs. The fruit is readily eaten and disseminated by many species of birds. The plants begin to flower and fruit from three years old.
Edible Uses:
Fruits are eaten raw or cooked as a seasoning in soups. Dry, sweet and mealy. The fruit can also be made into jellies or sherbets. The fruit must be fully ripe before it can be enjoyed raw, if even slightly under-ripe it will be quite astringent. The oval fruit is about 10mm long and contains a single large seed. Seed – raw or cooked. It can be eaten with the fruit though the seed case is rather fibrous.

Medicinal Uses:
Some people are reported to use the seed oil, like olive oil, for bronchitis, burns, catarrh, and constipation. Flowers are used for fever, neuralgia, and aching burns, allegedly bringing people back from their deathbeds.  The astringent leaves are used for enteritis and fever.  The oil from the seeds is used with syrup as an electuary in the treatment of catarrh and bronchial affections. The juice of the flowers has been used in the treatment of malignant fevers. It is a fairly good source of essential fatty acids, which is fairly unusual for a fruit. It is being investigated as a food that is capable of reducing the incidence of cancer and also as a means of halting or reversing the growth of cancers. The ripe fruits have been used to treat amoebic dysentery. There is general belief that leaves and fruits of the plant have antipyretic effect. In folk medicine, oleaster fruit or flower preparations are used for treating nausea, vomiting, jaundice, asthma, and flatulence. An infusion of the fruit has been used in Iranian traditional medicine as an analgesic agent for alleviating pain in rheumatoid arthritis patients. The flower is also traditionally used for treating tetanus.  Juice of flower is used in Spain for malignant fever. Oil from the seed is used in catarrhal and bronchial affections. Locally the fruit is used as blood purifier and for coughs.

The fruit of many members of this genus is a very rich source of vitamins and minerals, especially in vitamins A, C and E, flavanoids and other bio-active compounds. It is also a fairly good source of essential fatty acids, which is fairly unusual for a fruit. It is being investigated as a food that is capable of reducing the incidence of cancer and also as a means of halting or reversing the growth of cancers.

Other Uses:
Plants can be grown as a hedge in exposed positions, tolerating maritime exposure. It is fairly fast-growing and very tolerant of pruning, but is rather open in habit and does not form a dense screen. Because the plant fixes atmospheric nitrogen, it makes a hedge that enriches the soil rather than depriving it of nutrients. An essential oil obtained from the flowers is used in perfumery. A gum from the plant is used in the textile industry in calico printing. Wood – hard, fine-grained. Used for posts, beams, domestic items, it is also much used for carving. The wood is an excellent fuel.

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/Elaeagnus_angustifolia
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_RST.htm?Voucher2=Connect+to+Internet
http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Datei:Elaeagnus_angustifolia_20050608_859.jpg
http://www.nps.gov/plants/alien/fact/elan1.htm

http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Elaeagnus+angustifolia

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