Tag Archives: Easter

Polygonum bistorta

 

Botanical Name:  Polygonum bistorta /Persicaria bistorta
Family: Polygonaceae
Genus: Persicaria
Species: P. bistorta
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Caryophyllales

Synonyms-: Osterick. Oderwort. Snakeweed. Easter Mangiant. Adderwort. Twice Writhen.

Common Names: Bistort, Common bistort
The Latin name bistorta refers to the twisted appearance of the root.

Numerous other vernacular names have been recorded for the species in historical texts, though none is used to any extent. Many of the following refer to the plant’s use in making puddings:

*Adderwort
*Dragonwort
*Easter giant
*Easter ledger
*Easter ledges
*Easter magiant
*Easter man-giant
*Gentle dock
*Great bistort
*Osterick
*Oysterloit
*Passion dock
*Patience dock
*Patient dock
*Pink pokers
*Pudding grass
*Pudding dock
*Red legs
*Snakeweed
*Twice-writhen
*Water ledges
Habitat:  Polygonum bistorta    is native of many parts of Northern Europe, occurring in Siberia and in Japan and in Western Asia to the Himalayas. It is common in the north of England and in southern Scotland, growing in moist meadows, though only of local occurrence; in Ireland, it is very rare.It grows in damp meadows and by water, especially on acid soils

Description:
Polygonum bistorta   is an herbaceous perennial growing to 75 cm (30 in) tall by 90 cm (35 in) wide. The foliage is normally basal with a few smaller leaves produced near the lower end of the flowering stems. The leaves are oblong-ovate or triangular-ovate in shape and narrow at the base. The petioles are broadly winged. The plant blooms from late spring into autumn, producing tall stems ending in single terminal racemes that are club-like spikes, 5–7 cm (2–3 in) long, of rose-pink flowers.  The plant grows in moist soils and under dry conditions goes dormant, losing its foliage until adequate moisture exists again…...CLICK &  SEE THE  PICTURES

Cultivation:
This species is grown as an ornamental garden plant, especially the form ‘Superba’ which has larger, more showy flowers, and has gained the Royal Horticultural Society‘s Award of Garden Merit. It is suitable for use as a marginal or in bog gardens.

Propagation:
Seed – sow spring in a cold frame. Germination is usually free and easy. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in the summer if they have reached sufficient size. If not, overwinter them in a cold frame and plant them out the following spring after the last expected frosts. Division in spring or autumn. Very easy, larger divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions. We have found that it is better to pot up the smaller divisions and grow them on in light shade in a cold frame until they are well established before planting them out in late spring or early summer.

Edible Uses:
Leaves – raw or cooked. One report says that they are rather bitter, but   it is found that they have a fairly mild flavour, especially when the leaves are young, though the texture is somewhat chewy when they are eaten raw. They make an excellent substitute for spinach. In Northern England the leaves are an ingredient of a bitter Lenten pudding, called Easter ledger pudding, that is eaten at Lent. The leaves are available from late winter in most years and can be eaten until the early autumn though they become much tougher as the season progresses. The leaves are a good source of vitamins A and C, a nutritional analysis is available. Seed – raw or cooked. The seed is very small and rather fiddly to utilize. Root – raw or cooked. Rich in starch and tannin, it is steeped in water and then roasted in order to reduce the tannin content. It is then said to be a tasty and nutritious food. The root has also been boiled or used in soups and stews and can be dried then ground into a powder and used in making bread. The root contains 30% starch, 1% calcium oxalate and 15 – 36% tannin.

Part Used in medicines: The root-stock, gathered in March, when the leaves begin to shoot, and dried.

Constituents:
Figures in grams (g) or miligrams (mg) per 100g of food.
Leaves (Fresh weight)
0 Calories per 100g
Water : 82.6%
Protein: 3g; Fat: 0.8g; Carbohydrate: 7.9g; Fibre: 3.2g; Ash: 2.4g;
Minerals – Calcium: 0mg; Phosphorus: 0mg; Iron: 0mg; Magnesium: 0mg; Sodium: 0mg; Potassium: 0mg; Zinc: 0mg;
Vitamins – A: 0mg; Thiamine (B1): 0mg; Riboflavin (B2): 0mg; Niacin: 0mg; B6: 0mg; C: 0mg;
The roots contain up to 21% tannin.
Medicinal Uses:
Antidiarrhoeal; Astringent; Demulcent; Diuretic; Febrifuge; Laxative; Styptic.

Bistort is one of the most strongly astringent of all herbs and it is used to contract tissues and staunch blood flow. The root is powerfully astringent, demulcent, diuretic, febrifuge, laxative and strongly styptic. It is gathered in early spring when the leaves are just beginning to shoot, and then dried. It is much used, both internally and externally, in the treatment of internal and external bleeding, diarrhoea, dysentery, cholera etc. It is also taken internally in the treatment of a wide range of complaints including catarrh, cystitis, irritable bowel syndrome, peptic ulcers, ulcerative colitis and excessive menstruation. Externally, it makes a good wash for small burns and wounds, and is used to treat pharyngitis, stomatitis, vaginal discharge, anal fissure etc. A mouth wash or gargle is used to treat spongy gums, mouth ulcers and sore throats. The leaves are astringent and have a great reputation in the treatment of wounds. In Chinese medicine the rhizome is used for: epilepsy, fever, tetanus, carbuncles, snake and mosquito bites, scrofula and cramps in hands and feet. Considered useful in diabetes.
Roots and leaves were used to counteract poisons and to treat malaria and intermittent fevers. Dried and powdered it was applied to cuts and wounds to staunch bleeding, and a decoction in wine was taken for internal bleeding and diarrhea (especially in babies). It was also given to cause sweating and drive out the plague, smallpox, measles and other infectious diseases. Bistort is rich in tannins and one of the best astringents. Taken internally, it is excellent for bleeding, such as from nosebleeds, heavy periods and wounds, and for diarrhea and dysentery. Since it reduces inflammation and mucous secretions it makes a good remedy for colitis and for catarrhal congestion. It was originally recommended in 1917 as a treatment for debility with a tendency towards tuberculosis. It has also been used externally for pharyngitis, stomatitis, vaginal discharge, anal fissure, purulent wounds, hemorrhoids, mouth ulcers and gum disease. Comes well with Geranium maculatum.

Other Uses:.….Tannin………The roots contain up to 21% tannin

Known Hazards: Although no specific mention has been made for this species, there have been reports that some members of this genus can cause photosensitivity in susceptible people. Many species also contain oxalic acid (the distinctive lemony flavour of sorrel) – whilst not toxic this substance can bind up other minerals making them unavailable to the body and leading to mineral deficiency. Having said that, a number of common foods such as sorrel and rhubarb contain oxalic acid and the leaves of most members of this genus are nutritious and beneficial to eat in moderate quantities. Cooking the leaves will reduce their content of oxalic acid. People with a tendency to rheumatism, arthritis, gout, kidney stones or hyperacidity should take especial caution if including this plant in their diet since it can aggravate their condition.

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/Persicaria_bistorta
http://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/b/bistor45.html
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Polygonum+bistorta

Pulsatilla nuttalliana

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

Syn.:  Anemone patens v.nuttalliana,

Common Name :Pasque Flower , Pasque Flower, Prairie Crocus, Eastern pasqueflower, prairie smoke, prairie crocus, and cutleaf anemone

Habitat:Pulsatilla nuttalliana is native to Europe, Russia, Mongolia, China, Canada and the United States.

Description:
Pulsatilla patens is a species Perennial Wildf flowering plant.The common name ‘Pasque Flower’ was given for its early blooming habits coinciding with Easter
Flowers/Fruit/Seeds:Light purplish flowers bloom in April before the appearance of the true leaves. Flowers give way to feathery seed heads which are quite showy.Leaves/Stem are erect, hairy stem grows to height of 4 to 10 inches, leaves divided, greyish green and lacy with smooth tops and hairy undersides.
Flowering Season:Spring

 

click to see the pictures…>…….(1)....(2)....(3).……..(4).…..

Two subspecies have been distinguished:
Pulsatilla patens subsp. patens
Pulsatilla patens subsp. multifida (Pritz.) Zämelis — cutleaf anemone

Medicinal Uses:
Properties: * Antibacterial * Antispasmodic * Nervine

Pasque flower was listed in the U.S. Pharmacopoeia at the time Millspaugh published his “American Medical Plants” in 1882, and was prescribed by both Eclectic physicians and homeopaths1 but is not widely used today because of its high toxicity. The plant can be an effective nervine in the hands of a trained herbalist for nervous exhaustion and dysmenorrhoea.

click to see

Other Uses: We all can enjoy the early spring blooms of pasque flower in our garden as a harbinger of spring.

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://www.anniesremedy.com/herb_detail552.php
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pulsatilla_patens

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Polygonum bistorta

Botanical Name :Polygonum bistorta or Persicaria bistorta
Family: Polygonaceae
Genus: Persicaria
Species: P. bistorta
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Caryophyllales
Synonyms: Persicaria bistorta (L.) Samp., Polygonum ampliusculum Gand., Polygonum bistorta L., Polygonum bourdinii Gand., Polygonum carthusianorum Gand., Polygonum ellipticum Willd. ex Spreng., Polygonum pilatense Gand.

Common Name : Bistort or Common Bistort,  Meadow bistort, Snakeweed

Numerous other vernacular names have been recorded for the species in historical texts, though none is used to any extent. Many of the following refer to the plant’s use in making puddings: Adderwort, Dragonwort, Easter giant, Easter ledger, Easter ledges, Easter magiant, Easter man-giant, Gentle dock, Great bistort, Osterick, Oysterloit, Passion dock, Patience dock (this name is also used for Rumex patientia), Patient dock, Pink pokers, Pudding grass, Pudding dock, Red legs, Snakeweed, Twice-writhen, Water ledges.

Habitat :     Polygonum bistorta is native to northern and central Europe, including Britain, mountains of S. Europe, western and central Asia. It grows in damp meadows and by water, especially on acid soils.

Description:
Polygonum bistorta is a perennial plant, growing to 0.5 m (1ft 8in) by 0.5 m (1ft 8in) at a fast rate.   It  blooms  late spring into mid summer, producing tall stems ending in single terminal racemes that are club-like spikes of pink-rose colored flowers.  The seeds ripen from Aug to October. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.  The racemes are about 2 cm thick and 5-9 cm long and end 1 meter tall,upright growing stems. Plants grow in moist soils and under dry conditions go dormant, losing their foliage until adequate moisture exists again. This species is grown as an ornamental garden plant, especially the form ‘Superba’ which has larger, more showy flowers. Typically alpine plants growing from short, thick rhizomes that branch. The foliage is normally basal with a few smaller leaves produced near the lower end of the flowering stems. The leaves are oblong-ovate or triangular-ovate in shape and narrow at the base. The petioles are broadly winged.

CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES
The Latin name “bistorta” refers to the twisted appearance of the root. In Northern England the plant was used to make a bitter pudding in Lent from a combination of the plant’s leaves, oatmeal, egg and other herbs. It is the principal ingredient of dock pudding or Easter-Ledge Pudding.  The root of Bistort can be used to produce an astringent that was used in medicine.

Cultivation:
Landscape Uses: Container, Ground cover. Succeeds in an ordinary garden soil[1] but prefers a moisture retentive not too fertile soil in sun or part shade. The plant repays generous treatment. A very cold-hardy plant, tolerating temperatures down to at least -25°c. Bistort was formerly cultivated as a medicinal and edible plant, though it has now fallen into virtual disuse. Plants are somewhat spreading, forming quite extensive colonies especially in low-lying pastures. They seem to be immune to the predations of rabbits. Special Features: Attractive foliage, Edible, Not North American native, Invasive, Suitable for cut flowers, Suitable for dried flowers.

Propagation:
Seed – sow spring in a cold frame. Germination is usually free and easy. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in the summer if they have reached sufficient size. If not, overwinter them in a cold frame and plant them out the following spring after the last expected frosts. Division in spring or autumn. Very easy, larger divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions. We have found that it is better to pot up the smaller divisions and grow them on in light shade in a cold frame until they are well established before planting them out in late spring or early summer.

Edible Uses::…Edible Parts: Leaves; Root; Seed.
Leaves – raw or cooked. One report says that they are rather bitter[5], but we have found them to have a fairly mild flavour, especially when the leaves are young, though the texture is somewhat chewy when they are eaten raw. They make an excellent substitute for spinach. In Northern England the leaves are an ingredient of a bitter Lenten pudding, called Easter ledger pudding, that is eaten at Lent. The leaves are available from late winter in most years and can be eaten until the early autumn though they become much tougher as the season progresses. The leaves are a good source of vitamins A and C, a nutritional analysis is available. Seed – raw or cooked. The seed is very small and rather fiddly to utilize. Root – raw or cooked. Rich in starch and tannin, it is steeped in water and then roasted in order to reduce the tannin content. It is then said to be a tasty and nutritious food. The root has also been boiled or used in soups and stews and can be dried then ground into a powder and used in making bread. The root contains 30% starch, 1% calcium oxalate and 15 – 36% tannin.
Composition:
Figures in grams (g) or miligrams (mg) per 100g of food.
Leaves (Fresh weight)

*0 Calories per 100g
* Water : 82.6%
*Protein: 3g; Fat: 0.8g; Carbohydrate: 7.9g; Fibre: 3.2g; Ash: 2.4g;
*Minerals – Calcium: 0mg; Phosphorus: 0mg; Iron: 0mg; Magnesium: 0mg; Sodium: 0mg; Potassium: 0mg; Zinc: 0mg;
*Vitamins – A: 0mg; Thiamine (B1): 0mg; Riboflavin (B2): 0mg; Niacin: 0mg; B6: 0mg; C: 0mg;

Medicinal Uses:

Bistort is one of the most strongly astringent of all herbs and it is used to contract tissues and staunch blood flow. The root is powerfully astringent, demulcent, diuretic, febrifuge, laxative and strongly styptic. It is gathered in early spring when the leaves are just beginning to shoot, and then dried. It is much used, both internally and externally, in the treatment of internal and external bleeding, diarrhoea, dysentery, cholera etc. It is also taken internally in the treatment of a wide range of complaints including catarrh, cystitis, irritable bowel syndrome, peptic ulcers, ulcerative colitis and excessive menstruation. Externally, it makes a good wash for small burns and wounds, and is used to treat pharyngitis, stomatitis, vaginal discharge, anal fissure etc. A mouth wash or gargle is used to treat spongy gums, mouth ulcers and sore throats. The leaves are astringent and have a great reputation in the treatment of wounds. In Chinese medicine the rhizome is used for: epilepsy, fever, tetanus, carbuncles, snake and mosquito bites, scrofula and cramps in hands and feet . Considered useful in diabetes.

Roots and leaves were used to counteract poisons and to treat malaria and intermittent fevers. Dried and powdered it was applied to cuts and wounds to staunch bleeding, and a decoction in wine was taken for internal bleeding and diarrhea (especially in babies). It was also given to cause sweating and drive out the plague, smallpox, measles and other infectious diseases. Bistort is rich in tannins and one of the best astringents. Taken internally, it is excellent for bleeding, such as from nosebleeds, heavy periods and wounds, and for diarrhea and dysentery. Since it reduces inflammation and mucous secretions it makes a good remedy for colitis and for catarrhal congestion. It was originally recommended in 1917 as a treatment for debility with a tendency towards tuberculosis. It has also been used externally for pharyngitis, stomatitis, vaginal discharge, anal fissure, purulent wounds, hemorrhoids, mouth ulcers and gum disease. Comes well with Geranium maculatum.

Other Uses:......Tannin.……The roots contain up to 21% tannin

Known Hazards:   Although no specific mention has been made for this species, there have been reports that some members of this genus can cause photosensitivity in susceptible people. Many species also contain oxalic acid (the distinctive lemony flavour of sorrel) – whilst not toxic this substance can bind up other minerals making them unavailable to the body and leading to mineral deficiency. Having said that, a number of common foods such as sorrel and rhubarb contain oxalic acid and the leaves of most members of this genus are nutritious and beneficial to eat in moderate quantities. Cooking the leaves will reduce their content of oxalic acid. People with a tendency to rheumatism, arthritis, gout, kidney stones or hyperacidity should take especial caution if including this plant in their diet since it can aggravate their condition.

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/Persicaria_bistorta
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_AB.htm

http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Polygonum+bistorta

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Exercise Without Really Trying: 4 Ideas

Simple ways to make burning calories second nature.

Burning calories becomes something you never need to think about when you incorporate movement into most moments of your day. Here’s how to spend less time counting calories:

1. Get on the vacuum program. Make vacuuming a total body exercise by stepping forward in a slightly longer-than-usual stride as you move the carpet machine forward while keeping your back straight, then stepping back as you draw the unit toward you again. At the same time you work the muscles of your legs with this lunge-like motion, roll the vacuum cleaner forward with your arms, which uses your shoulder, chest, arm, and upper back for a near-complete workout that contains elements of both strength and aerobic conditioning....CLICK & SEE

2. Make every movement count. Fidgeting burns hundreds of calories a day, according to studies at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, and even chewing gum eats up 11 calories an hour. So don’t lose sight of the fact that any form of physical activity — no matter how small — helps your body burn calories. More ways to get movement into your everyday life:

Always stand up and walk around when on the telephone.

Always stand up and walk around during television commercials.

Chop your vegetables by hand, rather than using a food processor.

While in the car, roll your shoulders and stretch your arms at red lights.

Whenever you have music on, tap your toes or bounce your knee to the rhythm.

Insist on bagging your own groceries at the food store.

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3. Get two workouts in one.
You can burn a substantial amount of extra calories during a strength workout if you move quickly from one exercise to the next. By keeping in motion rather than resting between exercises, you are combining strengthening with aerobic exercise, greatly boosting your energy burn. Key trick: Alternate between upper- and lower-body moves, so you give just-exercised muscles time to rest.

4. Track your metabolism. Even if you boost your metabolism, how would you know? It’s largely been a matter of guesswork or cumulative results on the bathroom scale. Now, however, health providers and fitness centers can help clients track their resting metabolic rate (RMR) — the basic measure of metabolism — using a new device called the BodyGem. When you breathe into the handheld inhaler-like unit for a few minutes, your current RMR pops up on a digital readout, giving you a calorie goal for both diet and exercise — and a tangible way to check on your progress. To find healthcare professionals or gyms using the BodyGem, check a locator feature on the manufacturer’s website, www.healthetech.com.

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From :The Everyday Arthritis Solution