Categories
Herbs & Plants

Rudbechia hirta

Botanical Name: Rudbechia hirta
Family: Asteraceae
Genus: Rudbeckia
Species: R. hirta
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Asterales

Common Names: Black-Eye-Susan, Brown-eyed susan, Brown betty, Gloriosa daisy, Golden Jerusalem, Poorland daisy, Yellow daisy, and Yellow ox-eye daisy
Habitat: Rudbechia hirta native to the Eastern and Central North America and naturalized in the Western part of the continent as well as in China. It has now been found in all 10 Canadian Provinces and all 48 of the states in the contiguous United States.

Description:
Rudbeckia hirta is an upright annual (sometimes biennial or perennial) growing 30–100 cm (12–39 in) tall by 30–45 cm (12–18 in) wide. It has alternate, mostly basal leaves 10–18 cm long, covered by coarse hair, with stout branching stems and daisy-like, composite flower heads appearing in late summer and early autumn. In the species, the flowers are up to 10 cm (4 in) in diameter, with yellow ray florets circling conspicuous brown or black, dome-shaped cone of many small disc florets. However, extensive breeding has produced a range of sizes and colours, including oranges, reds and browns
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Varieties:
There are four varieties

*Rudbeckia hirta var. angustifolia – southeastern + south-central United States (South Carolina to Texas)
*Rudbeckia hirta var. floridana – Florida
*Rudbeckia hirta var. hirta – Eastern United States (Maine to Alabama).
*Rudbeckia hirta var. pulcherrima. Widespread in most of North America (Newfoundland to British Columbia, south to Alabama and New Mexico; naturalized Washington to California).

Cultivation:
Rudbeckia hirta is widely cultivated in parks and gardens, for summer bedding schemes, borders, containers, wildflower gardens, prairie-style plantings and cut flowers. Numerous cultivars have been developed, of which ‘Indian Summer’ and ‘Toto’ have gained the Royal Horticultural Society‘s Award of Garden Merit. Other popular cultivars include ‘Double Gold’ and ‘Marmalade’.

Gloriosa daisies are tetraploid cultivars having much larger flower heads than the wild species, often doubled or with contrasting markings on the ray florets. They were first bred by Alfred Blakeslee of Smith College by applying colchicine to R. hirta seeds; Blakeslee’s stock was further developed by W. Atlee Burpee and introduced to commerce at the 1957 Philadelphia Flower Show. Gloriosa daisies are generally treated as annuals or short-lived perennials and are typically grown from seed, though there are some named cultivars.

Medicinal Uses:
Certain parts of the plant contains anthocyanins a class of antioxidant with several known health benefits.

Traditional Native American medicinal uses:
American Indians used root tea to treat parasitic infestations such as pinworm. They used it externally to treat snake bits, superficial wounds and earaches.

*The roots but not the seedheads of Rudbeckia hirta can be used much like the related Echinacea purpurea to boost immunity and fight colds, flu and infections.
*It is also an astringent when used in a warm infusion as a wash for sores and swellings.
*The Ojibwa people used it as a poultice for snake bites and to make an infusion for treating colds and worms in children.
*The plant is also diuretic and was used by the Menominee and Potawatomi peoples.
*Juice from the roots has been used as drops for earaches

Other Uses:
*Butterflies are attracted to Rudbeckia hirta when planted in large color-masses, creating a beautiful spectacle.
* The black-eyed Susan which also traditionally symbolizes “Justice” makes a very nice cut-flower with a vase life up to 10 days

Known Hazards: The species is known to be toxic to cats when ingeste
As with any wild plant, it is usually recommended to research carefully before consuming as not all parts of the plant may be edible and to avoid mis-identification with other plants that may look similar to the Black eyed Susan.
It is widely recommended always to consul

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/Rudbeckia_hirta
http://www.piam.com/mms_garden/plants.html

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Categories
News on Health & Science

Indoor Plants Cut Formaldehyde

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Indoor plants can reduce formaldehyde levels in the air, according to a new study.

..CLICK & SEE
The sources of the toxic gas formaldehyde are building materials including carpeting, curtains, plywood, and adhesives.

As it is emitted, it deteriorates the air quality, which can lead to ‘multiple chemical sensitivity‘ and ‘sick building syndrome‘, medical conditions with symptoms such as allergies, asthma, and headaches.

The prevalence of formaldehyde and other volatile organic compounds (VOC) is greater in new construction.

In the study, lead author Kwang Jin Kim of Korea‘s National Horticultural Research Institute compared the absorption rate of two types of houseplants, Weeping Fig (Ficus benjamina) and Fatsia japonica, an evergreen shrub.

During the study, equal amounts of formaldehyde were pumped into containers holding each type of plant in three configurations: whole, roots-only with the leafy portion cut off, and aerial-only, with the below-ground portion sealed off, leaving the stem and leaves exposed.

The results showed the combined total of aerial-only and roots-only portions was similar to the amount removed by whole plants. Complete plants removed approximately 80 percent of the formaldehyde within 4 hours.

Control chambers pumped with the same amount of formaldehyde, but not containing any plant parts, decreased by 7.3 percent during the day and 6.9 percent overnight within 5 hours. As the length of exposure increased, the amount of absorption decreased, which appeared to be due to the reduced concentration of the gas.

Aerial parts of reduced more formaldehyde during the day than at night. This suggests the role played by stomata, tiny slits on the surface of the leaves that are only open during the day.

The portion of formaldehyde that was reduced during the night was most likely absorbed through a thin film on the plant’s surface known as the cuticle. Root zones of ficus removed similar amounts between night and day. However, japonica root zones removed more formaldehyde at night.

Researchers consider micro-organisms living among the soil and root system to be a major contributor to the reduction. Japonica was planted in larger pots than the ficus, which may account for the lower night reduction rate of the latter.

Sources: The Times Of India

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Categories
Positive thinking

Permission To Forgive Ourselves

Releasing Guilt…....CLICK & SEE
Learning to accept the things that we perceive as wrong can be a difficult task for many of us. Often we have been brought up to accept that it is normal to feel guilty about our actions and that by doing so we will make everything seem alright within ourselves. Even though we might feel that we have a reason to make up for the choices we have made, it is much more important for us to learn how to deal with them in a healthy and positive way, such as through forgiveness and understanding.

When we can look back at our past and really assess what has happened, we begin to realize that there are many dimensions to our actions. While feeling guilty might assuage our feelings at first, it is really only a short-term solution. It is all too ironic that being hard on ourselves is the easy way out. If we truly are able to gaze upon our lives through the lens of compassion, however, we will be able to see that there is much more to what we do and have done than we realize. Perhaps we were simply trying to protect ourselves or others and did the best we could at the time, or maybe we thought we had no other recourse and chose a solution in the heat of the moment. Once we can understand that dwelling in our negative feelings will only make us feel worse, we will come to recognize that it is really only through forgiving ourselves that we can transform our feelings and truly heal any resentment we have about our past.

Giving ourselves permission to feel at peace with our past actions is one of the most positive steps we can take toward living a life free from regrets, disappointments, and guilt. The more we are able to remind ourselves that the true path to a peaceful mind and heart is through acceptance of every part of our lives and actions, the more harmony and inner joy we will experience in all aspects of our lives.

Sources: Daily Om

Categories
Positive thinking

Hope In Hardship

Anything Can Be Overcome
The journey that each human being makes through earthly existence can have hardship as often as it is touched by joy. When we encounter adversity, the stress we feel can erode our optimism, eventually convincing us that the issues we face cannot be overcome. In truth, there is no situation so dire, no challenge so great, and no choice so bewildering that it cannot be overcome. Though we may believe that all avenues have been closed to us or that our most conscientious efforts will come to naught, we are never without feasible options. The best course of action may be veiled in doubt, but it is there. When we are honest with ourselves with regard to this simple fact, we can overcome anything because we will never stop looking for a solution to the challenges before us.

Self-trust coupled with a sturdy plan is the ultimate antidote to adversity’s tendency to inspire disillusionment in the human mind. As difficult as the obstacle plaguing you seems, it is no match for the love of a supportive universe that has been a part of your life since the day of your birth and will be with you forevermore. Try not to be misguided by your fear as this gives rise to the notion that there are problems without solutions. If you believe in your capabilities and dedicate yourself to the creation of some form of resolution, you will be surprised to discover that paths that were once closed to you miraculously open. Even if all you can do is change your perspective to turn an impediment into an opportunity to grow, you will have found the hope that is an inherent element of all hardship.

Remember that your destiny is a product of your own creation. Even when it seems you have nowhere left to turn, there is a solution waiting for you. The only insurmountable obstacles are the ones you create in your own mind—and these can only exert power over you if you let them. Uncertainty will always be a part of your existence, but perseverance and mindfulness will never fail to see you through to the other side of hardship where joy can thrive. Try and remember that no matter what life places at your feet, there is absolutely no situation that cannot be resolved with time, love, and friendship.

Source:Daily Om

Categories
Healthy Tips

10 Ways to Manage Stress

Stress is a normal part of life and usually comes from everyday occurrences. Here are some ways you can deal with everyday sources of stress:……..click & see

1.Eliminate as many sources of stress as you can. For example, if crowds bother you, go to the supermarket when you know the lines won’t be too long. Try renting videotapes rather than going to crowded movie theaters. Clear up the clutter in your life by giving away or throwing away the things that get in your way. A garage sale is one effective way to do this.

2.If you are always running late, sit down with a pencil and paper and see how you are actually allotting your time. Say it takes you 40 minutes to get to work. Are you leaving your house on time? You may be able to solve your problem (and de-stress your life a bit) just by being realistic. If you can’t find the time for all the activities that are important to you, maybe you are trying to do too much. Again, make a list of what you do during the day and how much each activity takes. Then cut back.

3.Avoid predictably stressful situations. If a certain sport or game makes you tense (whether it’s tennis or bridge), decline the invitation to play. After all, the point of these activities is to have a good time. If you know you won’t, there’s no reason to play.

4.If you can’t remove the stress, remove yourself. Slip away once in a while for some private time. These quiet moments may give you a fresh perspective on your problems. Avoid stressful people. For example, if you don’t get along with your father-in-law but you don’t want to make an issue of it, invite other in-laws at the same time you invite him. Having other people around will absorb some of the pressure you would normally feel.

5. Competing with others, whether in accomplishments, appearance, or possessions, is an avoidable source of stress. You might know people who do all they can to provoke envy in others. While it may seem easy to say you should be satisfied with what you have, it’s the truth. Stress from this kind of jealousy is self-inflicted.

6.Laborsaving devices, such as cellular phones or computer hookups, often encourage us to cram too many activities into each day. Before you buy new equipment, be sure that it will really improve your life. Be aware that taking care of equipment and getting it repaired can be stressful.

7.Try doing only one thing at a time. For example, when you’re riding your exercise bike, you don’t have to listen to the radio or watch television.

8.Remember, sometimes it’s okay to do nothing.

9.If you suffer from insomnia, headaches, recurring colds, or stomach upsets, consider whether stress is part of the problem. Being chronically angry, frustrated, or apprehensive can deplete your physical resources.

10.If you feel stress (or anything else) is getting the better of you, seek professional help — a doctor or therapist. Early signs of excess stress are loss of a sense of well-being and reluctance to get up in the morning to face another day.

Source:Reader’s Digest