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Herbs & Plants

Atriplex confertifolia

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Botanical Name : Atriplex confertifolia
Family: Chenopodiaceae
Genus: Atriplex
Species:A. confertifolia
Kingdom:Plantae
Order: Caryophyllales

Synonyms:
*Atriplex collina Wooton & Standl.
*Atriplex jonesii Standl.
*Atriplex sabulosa M.E.Jones 1903 not Rouy 1890
*Atriplex subconferta Rydb.
*Obione confertifolia Torr. & Frém.
*Obione rigida Torr. & Frém.

Common Names: Shadscale, Shadscale saltbush, Spiny saltbush, Sheep-fat

Habitat : Atriplex confertifolia is native to the western United States and northern Mexico. It grows on gravelly to fine-textured soils in greasewood, mat-atriplex, other salt desert shrub, sagebrush, pinyon-juniper, and ponderosa pine communities, 600 – 2200 metres.

Description:
Atriplex confertifolia is an evergreen Shrub growing to 1.8 m (6ft). It is in leaf 12-Jan and is in flower in June, and the seeds ripen in August. The flowers are dioecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but only one sex is to be found on any one plant so both male and female plants must be grown if seed is required) and are pollinated by Wind.The plant is not self-fertile.

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Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very alkaline and saline soils.
It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought.

Cultivation:
Requires a light or medium well-drained but not too fertile soil in a sunny position. Tolerates saline and very alkaline soils[200]. Succeeds in a hot dry position. Plants resent root disturbance when they are large. Plants are apt to succumb to winter wet when grown on heavy or rich soils. Shadscale forms hybrids with Atriplex canescens, A. garrettii, A. corrugata, and A. gardneri varieties. It is, however, closely allied to A. parryi and A. spinifera. Dioecious. Male and female plants must be grown if seed is required.
Propagation:
Seed – sow April/May in a cold frame in a compost of peat and sand. Germinates in 1 – 3 weeks at 13°c. Pot up the seedlings when still small into individual pots, grow on in a greenhouse for the first winter and plant out in late spring or early summer after the last expected frosts. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, July/August in a frame. Very easy. Pot up as soon as they start to root (about 3 weeks) and plant out in their permanent positions late in the following spring. Cuttings of mature wood of the current season’s growth, November/December in a frame. Very easy. Pot up in early spring and plant out in their permanent position in early summer
Edible Uses:
Leaves – cooked and used as greens. The water in which the leaves is cooked is used in making corn pudding. Seed – used in piñole or ground into a meal and used as a thickener in making bread or mixed with flour in making bread.
Medicinal Uses:

Antispasmodic; Poultice.

The plant has been burnt and the smoke inhaled as a treatment for epilepsy. The boiled leaves have been used as a liniment for sore muscles and aches. A poultice of the mashed leaves have been applied to the chest and a decoction of the leaves drunk to treat colds.

Other Uses: Shadscale fruits and leaves provide important winter browse for domestic livestock and native herbivores. Compared to fourwing saltbush (Atriplex canescens), shadscale has shorter and wider leaves and the fruit does not have four wings (although it may have two wings in a “V” shape).

Known Hazards : No member of this genus contains any toxins, all have more or less edible leaves. However, if grown with artificial fertilizers, they may concentrate harmful amounts of nitrates in their leaves.

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/Atriplex_confertifolia
http://www.fs.fed.us/database/feis/plants/shrub/atrcon/all.html
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Atriplex+confertifolia

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Herbs & Plants

Galium odoratum

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Botanical Name :Galium odoratum
Family: Rubiaceae
Genus: Galium
Species: G. odoratum
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Gentianales
Synonyms: Asperula odorata – L.
Common Names: woodruff, sweet woodruff, and wild baby’s breath; master of the woods
Habitat :Galium odoratum  is native to much of Europe from Spain and Ireland to Russia, as well as Western Siberia, Turkey, Iran, the Caucasus, China and Japan. It is also sparingly naturalized in scattered locations in the United States and Canada. It grows in woodland and shady areas on damp calcareous and base rich soils. Often found in beech woods

Description:
Galium odoratum  is a Perennial herb, growing to 0.15m by 0.45m at a medium rate.The leaves are simple, lanceolate, glabrous, 2–5 cm long, and borne in whorls of 6-9. The small (4–7 mm diameter) flowers are produced in cymes, each white with four petals joined together at the base. The fruits are 2–4 mm diameter, produced singly, and each is covered in tiny hooked bristles which help disperse them by sticking temporarily to clothing and animal fur.

click to see the pictures…>....(01)..…....(1).(2).…..(3)…...(4).....(5).…..(6)…..(7).

It is hardy to zone 5 and is not frost tender. It is in flower from May to July, and the seeds ripen from July to August. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Flies, bees. The plant is self-fertile.

This plant prefers partial to full shade in moist, rich soils. In dry summers it needs frequent irrigation. Propagation is by crown division, separation of the rooted stems, or digging up of the barely submerged perimeter stolons. It is ideal as a groundcover or border accent in woody, acidic gardens where other shade plants fail to thrive. Deer avoid eating it (Northeast US

Cultivation:
Prefers a loose moist leafy soil in some shade. Tolerates dry soils but the leaves quickly become scorched when growing in full sun. This species does not thrive in a hot climate. Prefers a moist calcareous soil. Dislikes very acid soils. Tolerates a pH in the range 4.3 to 8.3. This species is very tolerant of atmospheric pollution and grows well in towns. A very cold-hardy plant, tolerating temperatures down to about -25°c. Sweet woodruff is occasionally cultivated in the herb garden for its medicinal and other uses. The dried foliage has the sweet scent of newly mown hay. A very ornamental plant but it spreads rapidly and can be invasive. However, this is rarely to the detriment of other plants since these are normally able to grow through it. It does no harm to any plants more than 60cm tall.

Propagation:
Seed – best sown in situ as soon as it is ripe in late summer. The seed can also be sown in spring though it may be very slow to germinate. A period of cold stratification helps reduce the germination time. Lots of leafmold in the soil and the shade of trees also improves germination rates. Division in spring. The plant can also be successfully divided throughout the growing season if the divisions are kept moist until they are established. Very easy, larger clumps can be replanted direct into their permanent positions, though it is best to pot up smaller clumps and grow them on in a cold frame until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the spring. Cuttings of soft wood, after flowering, in a frame.

Edible Uses:
Leaves are eaten raw or cooked. The leaves are coumarin-scented (like freshly mown hay), they are used as a flavouring in cooling drinks and are also added to fruit salads etc. The leaves are soaked in white wine to make ‘Maitrank‘, an aromatic tonic drink that is made in Alsace. A fragrant and delicious tea is made from the green-dried leaves and flowers. Slightly wilted leaves are used, the tea has a fresh, grassy flavour. The sweet-scented flowers are eaten or used as a garnish

Medicinal Uses:
Antispasmodic; Cardiac; Diaphoretic; Diuretic; Homeopathy; Sedative.

Sweet woodruff was widely used in herbal medicine during the Middle Ages, gaining a reputation as an external application to wounds and cuts and also taken internally in the treatment of digestive and liver problems. In current day herbalism it is valued mainly for its tonic, diuretic and anti-inflammatory affect. The leaves are antispasmodic, cardiac, diaphoretic, diuretic, sedative. An infusion is used in the treatment of insomnia and nervous tension, varicose veins, biliary obstruction, hepatitis and jaundice. The plant is harvested just before or as it comes into flower and can be dried for later use. One report says that it should be used with caution whilst another says that it is entirely safe. Excessive doses can produce dizziness and symptoms of poisoning. The dried plant contains coumarins and these act to prevent the clotting of blood – though in excessive doses it can cause internal bleeding. The plant is grown commercially as a source of coumarin, used to make an anticoagulant drug. Do not use this remedy if you are taking conventional medicine for circulatory problems or if you are pregnant. A number of species in this genus contain asperuloside, a substance that produces coumarin and gives the scent of new-mown hay as the plant dries. Asperuloside can be converted into prostaglandins (hormone-like compounds that stimulate the uterus and affect blood vessels), making the genus of great interest to the pharmaceutical industry. A homeopathic remedy made from the plant is used in the treatment of inflammation of the uterus

Other Uses
Dye; Ground cover; Pot-pourri; Repellent; Strewing.
A red dye is obtained from the root. Soft-tan and grey-green dyes are obtained from the stems and leaves. A good ground-cover plant for growing on woodland edges or in the cool shade of shrubs. It spreads rapidly at the roots. It is an ideal carpeting plant for bulbs to grow through. Although the fresh plant has very little aroma, as it dries it becomes very aromatic with the scent of newly-mown grass and then retains this aroma for years. It is used in the linen cupboard to protect from moths etc. It was also formerly used as a strewing herb and is an ingredient of pot-pourri. It was also hung up in bunches in the home in order to keep the rooms cool and fragrant during the summertime.

Scented Plants:
As the epithet odoratum suggests, the plant is strongly scented, the sweet scent being derived from coumarin. This scent increases on wilting and then persists on drying, and the dried plant is used in pot-pourri and as a moth deterrent. It is also used, mainly in Germany, to flavour May wine (called “Maibowle” in German), syrup for beer (Berliner Weisse), brandy, sausages, jelly, jam, a soft drink (Tarhun, which is Georgian), ice cream, and a herbal tea with gentle sedative properties. In Germany it is also used to flavour sherbet powder. Mixed with German “Korn schnapps” or vodka, it is a popular party drink among young people. Also very popular at parties is Waldmeister flavoured jelly made from vodka

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://digedibles.com/database/plants.php?Galium+odoratum
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Galium_odoratum
http://www.anniesremedy.com/herb_detail499.php

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Herbs & Plants

Gaultheria procumbens

Botanical Name :Gaultheria procumbens
Family: Ericaceae
Genus: Gaultheria
Species: G. procumbens
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Ericales

Common Names:Eastern teaberry, Checkerberry, BHoxberry, or American wintergreen, Teaberry, Mountain Tea, Spice Berry, Checker-berry, Partridge-berry.

Other Names:
American mountain tea, boxberry, Canada tea, canterberry, checkerberry, chickenberry, chinks, creeping wintergreen, deerberry, drunkards, gingerberry, ground berry, ground tea, grouseberry, hillberry, mountain tea, one-berry, partridge berry, procalm, red pollom, spice berry, squaw vine, star berry, teaberry, spiceberry, spicy wintergreen, spring wintergreen, teaberry, wax cluster, youngsters,

While this plant is also known as partridge berry, that name more often refers to the ground cover Mitchella repens.

Habitat : Gaultheria procumbens is native to northeastern North America from Newfoundland west to southeastern Manitoba, and south to Alabama. It is a member of the Ericaceae (heath family).It grows in Sterile woods (poor acid soils) and clearings. Especially found beneath evergreen trees

Description:
Gaultheria procumbens is a small low-growing shrub, typically reaching 10–15 centimeters (3.9–5.9 in) tall. The leaves are evergreen, elliptic to ovate, 2–5 cm long and 1–2 cm broad, with a distinct oil of wintergreen scent. The flowers are bell-shaped, 5 mm long, white, borne solitary or in short racemes. The berry-like fruit is actually a dry capsule surrounded by fleshy calyx, 6–9 mm diameter.
click to see the pictures…….>..(01)....(1).....(2).…...(3).…....(4).….….(5).
It is a calcifuge, favoring acidic soil, in pine or hardwood forests, although it generally produces fruit only in sunnier areas. It often grows as part of the heath complex in an oak-heath forest.

G. procumbens spreads by means of long rhizomes, which are within the top 20–30 mm of soil. Because of the shallow nature of the rhizomes, it does not survive most forest fires, but a brief or mild fire may leave rhizomes intact, from which the plant can regrow even if the above-ground shrub was consumed.

This plant has gained the Royal Horticultural Society‘s Award of Garden Merit

Edible Uses:Fruit are eaten raw or cooked. Pleasant but insipid. The fruit is not at all insipid, it has a very strong spicy taste of germolene, just like being in a hospital waiting room. Best after a frost, the fruit hangs onto the plant until spring if it is not eaten by birds etc. The fruits can also be used in pies, or made into jams etc. The fruit is up to 15mm in diameter. Young leaves – raw. A pleasant wayside nibble if used when very young. Dry and powdery according to our taste buds. A very agreeable tea is made from the fresh leaves. A stronger tea can be made by first fermenting the bright red leaves. ‘Oil of wintergreen’ can be distilled from this plant. It is used to flavour beer, sweets, chewing gum etc

For the leaves to yield significant amounts of their essential oil, they need to be fermented for at least 3 days.

Teaberry is also an ice cream flavor in regions where the plant grows. It also inspired the name of Clark’s Teaberry chewing gum.

Cultivation:
Prefers a moist but not boggy humus rich soil in shade or semi-shade. A peat and moisture loving species, it requires a lime-free soil. Succeeds in dry soils once it is well established and tolerates considerable drought. Grows well under the thin shade of deciduous shrubs or evergreens. A very cold-hardy plant, tolerating temperatures down to about -35°c. Plants can become invasive when growing in good conditions. Some named forms have been developed for their ornamental value, ‘Dart’s Red Giant’ has specially large berries. All parts of the plant are aromatic, the bruised leaves having the scent of wintergreen. Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus.

Propagation:
The seed requires a period of cold stratification. Pre-chill for 4 – 10 weeks and then surface sow in a lime-free compost in a shady part of the greenhouse and keep the compost moist. The seed usually germinates well, usually within 1 – 2 months at 20°c, but the seedlings are liable to damp off. It is important to water them with care and to ensure that they get plenty of ventilation. Watering them with a garlic infusion can also help to prevent damping of. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are about 25mm tall and grow them on in light shade in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out in late spring or early summer. The seedlings are susceptible to spring frosts so might need some protection for their first few years outdoors. The leaves remain very small for the first few years. Cuttings of half-ripe wood 3 – 6cm long, July/August in a frame in a shady position. They form roots in late summer or spring. A good percentage usually take. Division can be carried out at almost any time of the year, but works best in the spring just before new growth begins. Very easy, larger clumps can be replanted direct into their permanent positions, though it is best to pot up smaller clumps and grow them on in a cold frame until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the spring.

Constituents:
Constituents:  methyl salicylate, ketone, alcohol

Gaultheria procumbensis one of the richest sources of salicylic acid compared to other plants 1 including Salix spp. (willow), Betula spp. (birch), many poplars, and Viburnum prunifolium (black haw).

Medicinal Uses:
Analgesic; Antiinflammatory; Aromatic; Astringent; Carminative; Diuretic; Emmenagogue; Stimulant; Tonic.

Checkerberry leaves were widely used by the native North American Indians in the treatment of aches and pains and to help breathing whilst hunting or carrying heavy loads. An essential oil (known as ‘oil of wintergreen’) obtained from the leaves contains methyl salicylate, which is closely related to aspirin and is an effective anti-inflammatory. This species was at one time a major source of methyl salicylate, though this is now mainly synthesized. The leaves, and the oil, are analgesic, anti-inflammatory, aromatic, astringent, carminative, diuretic, emmenagogue, stimulant and tonic. An infusion of the leaves is used to relieve flatulence and colic. The plant, especially in the form of the essential oil, is most useful when applied externally in the treatment of acute cases of rheumatism, sciatica, myalgia, sprains, neuralgia and catarrh. The oil is sometimes used in the treatment of cellulitis, a bacterial infection that causes the skin to become inflamed. Some caution is advised, especially if the oil is used internally, since essential oil is toxic in excess, causing liver and kidney damage. It should not be prescribed for patients who are hypersensitive to salicylates (aspirin). The leaves can be gathered at any time from spring to early autumn, they are dried for use in infusions or distilled to produce the oil

The plant has been used by various tribes of Native Americans for medicinal purposes.

Other Uses:
Essential; Ground cover.

An essential oil is obtained from the leaves by steam distillation. In order to obtain the oil, the leaves need to be steeped for 12 – 24 hours in water. The essential oil is used as a food flavouring, medicinally (the original source of Wintergreen oil used as a liniment for aching muscles) and in perfumery and toothpastes. In large doses it can be toxic. A good ground-cover plant for shady positions though it requires weeding for the first year or so. Forming a dense tuft-like carpet, it roots as it spreads and should be spaced about 45cm apart each way.

Scented Plants:     Plant: CrushedAll parts of the plant are aromatic, the bruised leaves having the scent of wintergreen.

Known Hazards : The pure distilled essential oil is toxic in large doses

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/Gaultheria_procumbens
http://digedibles.com/database/plants.php?Gaultheria+procumbens
http://www.anniesremedy.com/herb_detail148.php

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Herbs & Plants

Iris germanica florentina

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Botanical Name : Iris germanica florentina
Family : Iridaceae
Subfamily: Iridoideae
Genus: Iris
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Asparagales
Tribe: Irideae
Subgenus: Iris
Section: Iris
Species: I. germanica

Synonyms :Iris florentina – L.

Common Name :Orris, German Flag

Habitat :Iris germanica florentina  is native to Europe – Mediterranean. It probably grows in an albino form of I. germanica, it is not found in a truly wild situation

Description:
Iris germanica florentina is a perennial flowering plant, growing to 0.9m by 0.6m.The roots can go up to 10 cm deep. It is hardy to zone 5 and is not frost tender. It is in flower in May, and the seeds ripen from July to August. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects. The plant is self-fertile.

Bloom Color: White. Main Bloom Time: Early summer, Mid summer. Form: Upright or erect..

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The plant prefers light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It requires moist soil.

Cultivation:
Prefers a sunny position in a well-drained soil that contains some lime. Grows well in dry soils in light deciduous shade. Succeeds in full sun or partial shade. Prefers a pH in the range 6 to 7.5 or higher. The plant is sometimes cultivated for the essential oil in its root. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer or rabbits.

Propagation:
Seed – best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame. Stored seed should be sown as early in the year as possible in a cold frame. A sterile plant, it does not produce seed. Division, best done after flowering though it is usually successful at most times of the year. Very easy, larger clumps can be replanted direct into their permanent positions, though it is best to pot up smaller clumps and grow them on in a cold frame until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the spring.

Edible Uses:
Edible Uses: Condiment.

The root can be dried, ground into a powder and used as a food flavouring[105]. The root may take several years of drying to develop its full fragrance.

Medicinal Uses:

Diuretic; Purgative; Stomachic.

The dried root is diuretic, expectorant and stomachic. It is taken internally in the treatment of coughs, catarrh and diarrhoea. Externally it is applied to deep wounds. The root is harvested in late summer and early autumn and dried for later use. The juice of the fresh root is a strong purge of great efficiency in the treatment of dropsy.
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English: Dried roots of Iris germanica (Orris ...
English: Dried roots of Iris germanica (Orris root), ready to be sold by the planter Walon: Souwêyès raecinêyes di cladjot d’ corti, presses a esse vindowe på cotlî (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Orris was formerly used in upper respiratory tract catarrh, coughs and for diarrhea in infants.  It was used to treat dropsy and has been used as a snuff for congestive headaches.  Dried root, preferably aged for at least 2 years. ½ to 1 teaspoon in warm water as suspended tea; the pressed “fingers” for teething infants to gum on.  Although sometimes a topical allergen, it is not so internally.

Other Uses:
Beads; Cosmetic; Dye; Essential; Ground cover; Incense.

The root is a source of Orris powder which has the scent of violets. It is obtained by grinding up the dried root. It is much used as a fixative in perfumery and pot-pourri, as an ingredient of toothpastes, breath fresheners etc and as a food flavouring. The root can take several years of drying to fully develop its violet-like fragrance, when fresh it has an acrid flavour and almost no smell. An essential oil is obtained from the fresh root, this has the same uses as the root. The root has been burnt in open fires in order to sweeten the smell of a room. The juice of the root is sometimes used as a cosmetic and also for the removal of freckles from the skin. A black dye is obtained from the root. A blue dye is obtained from the flowers. The seeds are used as rosary beads. Plants can be grown for ground cover, the dense mat of roots excluding all weeds.

Scented Plants:
Root: Dried
The dried root develops a delicious violet-like fragrance.

Known Hazards: The leaves, and especially the rhizomes, of this species contain an irritating resinous substance called irisin. If ingested this can cause severe gastric disturbances. Plants can cause skin irritations and allergies in some people

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://digedibles.com/database/plants.php?Iris+germanica+florentina
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iris_germanica
http://hortiplex.gardenweb.com/plants/jour/p/31/gw1021031/3197311017788975.jpeg
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_OPQ.htm

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Herbs & Plants

Bergenia ciliata

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Botanical Name : Bergenia ciliata Sternb.
Family :  Saxifragaceae
Genus :Bergenia
Species :Bergenia ciliata

Synonyms : Bergenia ligulata – Engl.,Megasea ciliata – Haw.,Saxifraga ciliata – (Haw.)Royle.,Saxifraga ligulata – Wall.,Saxifraga thysanodes – Lindl. B.ligulata E.L
Common Name : Pashanbhed, Pakhanbad, Dhoklambu, Patharchat, Silphoda

.
Habitat : E. Asia – Himalayas from Afghanistan to E. Tibet.  On moist rocks and under forest shade, 1900 – 2600 metres in Kashmir .Woodland Garden; Dappled Shade; Shady Edge; Ground Cover;

Description:
An evergreen Perennial growing to 0.3m by 0.5m. Leaves few, spreading, 4-11 x 3-10 cm, glabrous or hirsute, suborbicular to orbicular or broadly obovate, base cordate or sometimes rounded, apex rounded or sometimes abruptly acuminate; margin entire to occasionally denticulate at top, ciliate. Petiole 1-2(-5)cm long, glabrous or hirsute. Inflorescence a one sided raceme or corymbose, often subtended by an ovate leafy bract; bract glabrous or sparsely ciliate; scape and inflorescence greenish or pink tinged. Peduncle up to 10 cm long; flowers pink to purplish, pedicellate. Sepals c. 7 mm long, oblong. Petals 10 x 4 mm, unguiculate, limb orbicular. Filaments c. 1 cm long, pink to red. Carpels 2. Styles c. 7 mm long. Carpels and styles green or pinkish. Capsule 13 x 6 mm, including styles. Seeds elongated, c. 1 mm long, brown, minutely tuberculate.

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It is hardy to zone 7 and is frost tender. It is in leaf all year, in flower from March to May. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs)
The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and can grow in heavy clay and nutritionally poor soils. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It requires moist soil.

Cultivation :
Succeeds in full sun or light shade in most soils but prefers a deep fertile soil that does not dry out fully. Grows well in heavy clay soils. Plants are at their best in a medium-heavy soil. Succeeds in shade or semi-shade-. The leaf colour is best when plants are grown in a poor soil in a sunny position[188]. Dislikes cold winds . The plant is hardy to about -20°c, but the flowers and young leaves are rather sensitive to frost so it is best to choose a position with shade from the early morning sun. This species is only hardy in sheltered gardens of south and west Britain. If the leaves are cut back by frost then they are soon replaced by fresh leaves in the spring. The roots of this plant are commonly collected from the wild for medicinal purposes. Overcollection in many areas of its range are a cause for conservation concern. Plants seem to be immune to the predations of rabbits. The different species of this genus will hybridise freely when grown near each other.

Propagation:
Seed – surface sow in a greenhouse. Make sure that the compost does not dry out. Two weeks cold stratification can speed up germination which usually takes 1 – 6 months at 15°c. Fresh seed, sown as soon as it is ripe in late spring is liable to germinate better than stored seed. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in light shade in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Division in late spring after flowering or in autumn. Very easy, larger divisions can be planted straight into their permanent positions whilst smaller clumps are best potted up and kept in a cold frame until they are growing away well.

Edible Uses:
The flowers are boiled and then pickled.

Medicinal Uses:
Lithontripic; Ophthalmic; Poultice; Tonic.

A juice or powder of the whole plant is used to treat urinary troubles in Nepal. The juice of the leaves is used as drops to relieve earaches . The root is used as a tonic in the treatment of fevers, diarrhoea and pulmonary affections. The root juice is used to treat coughs and colds, haemorrhoids, asthma and urinary problems. Externally, the root is bruised and applied as a poultice to boils and ophthalmia, it is also considered helpful in relieving backache. The root of this plant has a high reputation in indigenous systems of medicine for dissolving stones in the kidneys.

Other Uses
Ground cover; Tannin.

The root contains 14 – 16% tannin. A good ground cover plant, forming a slowly spreading clump.

Resources:
http://server9.web-mania.com/users/pfafardea/database/plants.php?Bergenia+ciliata
http://vaniindia.org.whbus12.onlyfordemo.com/herbal/plantdir.asp
http://www.efloras.org/florataxon.aspx?flora_id=5&taxon_id=242308319
http://species.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Bergenia_ciliata.JPG