Tag Archives: Cicuta

Sium latifolium

Botanical Name: Sium latifolium
Family: Apiaceae
Genus: Sium
Species: S. latifolium
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Apiales

Synonym: Water Hemlock

Common Names: Great water-parsnip, Greater water-parsnip and Wideleaf waterparsnip

Habitat : Sium latifolium occurs in most of Europe, including Britain, excluding the northwest, Portugal, Greece and Turkey. It grows in fens and other wet places, often in water, avoiding acid conditions.

Description:
Sium latifolium is a perennial herb, growing to 2 m (6ft 7in). . It is in flower from Jul to August. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Beetles, flies, bees.The plant is self-fertile. The long creeping root-stock of this and the somewhat smaller, closely allied species S. angustifolium is poisonous, but pigs and oxen eat the stem and leaves without harm. However, cows in milk should not be allowed to eat it, as it communicates a disagreeable taste to the milk……..CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES

It is easily recognized by it’s pinnate leaves, the leaf-stalks carrying about six to eight pairs of ovate, toothed leaflets. The umbels of white flowers are flat and have a general involucre composed of broadish or lance-shaped bracts, and there is also an in volucel. The fruit bears slender ribs. Theerect, furrowed stems are from 3 to 6 feet high.

Cultivation: Prefers a light, rich, moisture retentive soil in full sun[200]. A plant of wet ground and shallow water, it grows best in about 20cm of water.

Propagation: Seed – sow late winter to early spring in a cold frame. The seed can be slow to germinate[200]. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and plant them out in the summer if they are large enough. Otherwise, grow them on in a cold frame for their first winter and plant them out in the following spring. Division in early spring just before new growth begins. Use the side roots. Larger divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions. We have found it best to pot up the smaller divisions and grow them on in a lightly shaded position in a cold frame, planting them out once they are well established in the summer
Edible Uses: …..Leaves are cooked and eaten.

Medicinal Uses: Not yet found any.

Other Uses: An essential oil is obtained from the seed.

Known Hazards: The entire plant, and especially the root, is poisonous. Firm proof of this is not available.

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.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sium_latifolium
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Sium+latifolium
http://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/p/parwat13.html

Cicuta virosa

Botanical Name : Cicuta virosa
Family: Apiaceae
Genus:     Cicuta
Species: C. virosa
Kingdom: PlantaeScan Settings
Order:     Apiales

Synonym: Cowbane.

Common Name :Water Hemlock, Cowbane or Northern Water Hemlock

Habitat :  Cicuta virosa is native to northern and central Europe, northern Asia and northwestern North America.It grows in wet meadows, along streambanks and other wet and marshy areas.

Description:
Cicuta virosa is a perennial herbaceous plant which grows up to 1–2 m tall. The stems are smooth, branching, swollen at the base, purple-striped, and hollow except for partitions at the junction of the leaves and stem. In cross section the stems have one flat side and the other sides are rounded. The leaves are alternate, tripinnate, only coarsely toothed, unlike the ferny, lacy leaves found in many other members of the family Apiaceae. The flowers are small, white and clustered in umbrella shaped inflorescences typical of the family. The many flowered umbellets have unequal pedicels that range from 5 to 11 cm long during fruiting. An oily, yellow liquid oozes from cuts to the stems and roots. This liquid has a rank smell resembling that of parsnips or carrots. The plant may be mistaken for parsnip due to its clusters of white tuberous roots.

click & see the pictures

TheCicuta virosa or  Water Hemlock may be distinguished from the true Hemlock as follows: (i) The pinnae of the leaves are larger and lanceshaped; (ii) the umbel of the flowers is denser and more compact; (iii) the stem is not spotted like the true Hemlock; (iv) the odour of the plant resembles that of smallage or parsley.

Both plants are poisonous; but while the root of the Water Hemlock is acrid and powerfully poisonous in its fresh state, though it loses its virulent qualities when dried, that of the true Hemlock possesses little or no active power.

The Water Hemlock produces tetanic convulsions, and is fatal to cattle. In April, 1857, two farmer’s sons were found lying paralysed and speechless close to a ditch where they had been working. Assistance was soon rendered, but they shortly expired. A quantity of the Water Hemlock grew in the ditch, where they had been employed. A piece of the root was subsequently found with the marks of teeth in it, near to where the men lay, and another piece of the same root was discovered in the pocket of one of them.

Medicinal Uses:
Parts Used: Root

The root is analgesic, antispasmodic, emetic, galactofuge and sedative. The whole plant is highly toxic and is not used in herbal medicine. A homeopathic remedy has been made from this plant in the past. It was used in the treatment of epilepsy, meningitis and other ailments affecting the brain

Known Hazards: The plant contains cicutoxin, which disrupts the workings of the central nervous system. In humans, cicutoxin rapidly produces symptoms of nausea, emesis and abdominal pain, typically within 60 minutes of ingestion. Poisoning can lead to tremors and seizures. A single bite of the root (which has the highest concentration of cicutoxin) can be sufficient to cause death. In animals the toxic dose and the lethal dose are nearly the same. One gram of water hemlock per kilogram of weight will kill a sheep and 230 grams is sufficient to kill a horse. Due to the rapid onset of symptoms, treatment is usually unsuccessful.

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/h/hemwat19.html
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Cicuta+virosa
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cicuta_virosa

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