Herbs & Plants

Taraxacum sinicum

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Botanical Name: Taraxacum sinicum
Family: Asteraceae
Subfamily: Cichorioideae
Tribe: Cichorieae
Subtribe: Crepidinae
Genus: Taraxacum
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Asterales

Habitat : Taraxacum sinicum is native to east Asia-China.

Taraxacum sinicum is a perennial herb. 8-15(-25) cm tall. Petiole brownish purple, narrow; leaf blade ± mid-green, linear-oblanceolate, 7-10(-15) × 0.6-1 cm, subglabrous to sparsely arachnoid, margin usually pinnatilobed, pinnatisect, or very deeply dissected or rarely undivided; lateral lobes 5-7(-9) pairs, linear to linear-triangular, ± recurved; interlobes narrow, usually 5-7 mm, margin entire; terminal lobe narrow, elongated, base sagittate, apex ± acute. Scapes brownish green, ± overtopping leaves, arachnoid and densely so below capitulum. Capitulum 1.5-2.5 cm wide. Involucre 6-7(-8) mm wide, ± subobconic at base. Outer phyllaries 16-18, yellowish green with red apex to dark green and often suffused reddish, imbricate, outermost ones ovate-lanceolate and 4.5-6.5 × 1.8-2.7 mm, middle ones ± lanceolate, 7-8 × 1.5-2 mm, and 1/3-1/2 as long as inner ones, appressed, with a ± conspicuous membranous to whitish 0.2-0.4 mm wide border, margin glabrous, apex ± flat to slightly callose; inner phyllaries 10-13 × ca. 1 mm, apex flat. Ligules deep yellow; outer ligules ± flat, outside striped dark gray; inner ligules with yellow to grayish apical teeth. Stigmas greenish gray. Anthers polliniferous; pollen grains irregular in size. Achene light grayish, 3.5-4.4 × 0.9-1 mm; body subsparsely to ± densely spinulose above, ± gradually narrowing into a thick subcylindric 0.7-1 mm cone, spinules coarse with uppermost ones curved upward; beak 5-6.5 mm, base ± thick. Pappus yellowish white, 6.5-7 mm. Fl. spring to summer. Agamosperm. 2n = 24

The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.The plant is self-fertile.
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 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 its native range it should succeed outdoors in many parts of the country. The following notes are based on the general needs of the genus. Prefers a well-drained humus-rich soil in full sun or light shade. Many species in this genus produce their seed apomictically. This is an asexual method of seed production where each seed is genetically identical to the parent plant. Occasionally seed is produced sexually, the resulting seedlings are somewhat different to the parent plants and if these plants are sufficiently distinct from the parents and then produce apomictic seedlings these seedlings are, in theory at least, a new species.
Seed – sow spring in a cold frame and either surface-sow or only just cover the seed. Make sure the compost does not dry out. Germination should take place within 2 weeks. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle, choosing relatively deep pots to accommodate the tap root. Plant them out in early summer. Division in early spring as the plant comes into growth.

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

Leaves – raw or cooked. The following uses are also probably applicable to this species, though we have no records for them Root – cooked. Flowers – raw or cooked. The unopened flower buds can be used in fritters. The whole plant is dried and used as a tea. A pleasant tea is made from the flowers. The leaves and the roots can also be used to make tea. The root is dried and roasted to make a coffee substitute.
Medicinal Uses:
Antibacterial; Cancer; Cholagogue; Diuretic; Galactogogue; Hepatic; Laxative; Stomachic.

The aerial parts of the plant are antibacterial, cholagogue, diuretic, galactogogue, laxative and stomachic. A decoction is used in treating abscesses, appendicitis, boils, liver problems, stomach disorders etc. It has been used for over 1,000 years by the Chinese in treating breast cancer and other disorders of the breasts including poor milk flow. The plant has an antibacterial action against Staphylococcus aureus, streptococci, Pneumococci, Meningococci, Bacillus dysenteriae, B. typhi, C. diphtheriae, Proteus etc. The stem has been used in the treatment of cancer.
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.

Taraxacum mongolicum