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Plantago australis

Plantago-altissima_1

Plantago-altissima_1 (Photo credit: amadej2008)

Botanical Name : Plantago australis
Family: Plantaginaceae– Plantain family
Genus: Plantago L.– plantain
Species:Plantago australis Lam.– Mexican plantain
Subspecies: Plantago australis Lam. ssp. hirtella (Kunth) Rahn– Mexican plantain
Kingdom: Plantae– Plants
Subkingdom: Tracheobionta– Vascular plants
Superdivision: Spermatophyta– Seed plants
Division: Magnoliophyta– Flowering plants
Class: Magnoliopsida– Dicotyledons
Subclass: Asteridae
Order: Plantaginales

Synonyms:
*Plantago australis Lam. ssp. hirtella (Kunth) Rahn
*PLHI4 Plantago hirtella Kunth
*PLHIG2 Plantago hirtella Kunth ssp. galeottiana (Decne.) Thorne
*PLHIG Plantago hirtella Kunth var. galeottiana (Decne.) Pilg.
*PLHIM Plantago hirtella Kunth var. mollior Pilg.

Common Name: Mexican Plantain

Habitat : Plantago australis is Native to
NORTHAN AMERICA:
*South-Central U.S.A.: United States – New Mexico [s.]
*Southwestern U.S.A.: United States – Arizona [s.]
*Northern Mexico: Mexico – Baja Sur, Chihuahua, Durango, Nuevo Leon, San Luis Potosi, Sonora
*Southern Mexico: Mexico – Chiapas, Federal District, Hidalgo, Mexico, Michoacan, Morelos, Oaxaca, Puebla, Veracruz

SOUTHERN AMERICA :
*Mesoamerica: Costa Rica; El Salvador; Guatemala; Honduras; Nicaragua; Panama
*Northern South America: Venezuela
*Brazil: Brazil
*Western South America: Bolivia; Colombia; Ecuador; Peru
*Southern South America: Argentina; Chile; Paraguay [s.]; Uruguay

It grows in Cultivated Beds.

Description:
Plantago australis is a Perennial plant growing to 0.2m by 0.2m.
CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES
It is hardy to zone 0. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Wind. The plant is self-fertile.
The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It requires moist soil.

Cultivation:
We have very little information on this species but it has been growing successfully with us since 1990 and seems to be fully hardy. It succeeds in any moderately fertile soil in a sunny position.

Propagation:
Seed – sow spring in a cold frame. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in early summer. A sowing can be made outdoors in situ in mid to late spring if you have enough seeds

Edible Uses:
Edible Parts: Leaves.

Young leaves – raw or cooked.

Medicinal Uses:
Laxative; Poultice.

Plantain seeds contain up to 30% mucilage which swells up in the gut, acting as a bulk laxative and soothing irritated membranes. Sometimes the seed husks are used without the seeds. A poultice of the leaves has been used in the treatment of cuts and boils.

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://species.wikimedia.org/wiki/Plantago_australis
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Plantago+australis
http://digedibles.com/database/plants.php?Plantago+australis
http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=PLAUH
http://www.ars-grin.gov/cgi-bin/npgs/html/taxon.pl?316970

Petasites palmatus

Botanical Name :Petasites palmatus
Family : Asteraceae – Aster family
Genus : Petasites Mill. – butterbur
Species : Petasites frigidus (L.) Fr. – arctic sweet coltsfoot
Variety : Petasites frigidus (L.) Fr. var. palmatus (Aiton) Cronquist – arctic sweet coltsfoot
Kingdom : Plantae – Plants
Subkingdom : Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
Superdivision : Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Division:  Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
Class : Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Subclass:  Asteridae
Order : Asterales

Common Names :Sweet Butterbur ,Western Coltsfoot,Sweet Coltsfoot

Habitat :Petasites palmatus is native to  N. America – Newfoundland to Massachusetts, west to Alaska and south to California. It grows in Low woods, glades and damp clearings. Swamps and along the sides of streams.

Description:
Petasites palmatus is a deciduous  perennial plant growing to 1’h x 3’w   at a fast rate. 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 Insects.The plant is not self-fertile.

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Leaves – round to heart- or kidney-shaped at stem base. 5 – 20 cm wide, deeply divided (more than halfway to centre), into 5 to 7 toothed lobes, green, essentially hairless above, thinly white-woolly below; stem leaves reduced to alternate bracts.

Flowers – in clusters of several to many white, 8 – 12 mm wide heads on glandular, often white-woolly stalks, mostly female or mostly male; ray flowers creamy white; disc flowers whitish to pinkish; involucres 7 – 16 mm high, bracts lance-shaped, hairy at base.; appearing early-summer.

Fruit – hairless, linear achenes, about 2 mm long, 5 to 10 ribs; pappus soft, white; appearingmid-summer.

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

Cultivation:
Succeeds in ordinary garden soil, but prefers a deep fertile humus-rich soil that is permanently moist but not stagnant, succeeding in shade, semi-shade or full sun. Requires a moist shady position. Plants can be grown in quite coarse grass, which can be cut annually in the autumn. Plants are hardy to about -20°c. A very invasive plant, too rampant for anything other than the wild garden. Dioecious, male and female plants must be grown if seed is required.

Propagation:   
Seed – we have no information on this species but suggest sowing the seed in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe or in early spring. Only just cover the seed and do not allow the compost to dry out. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in the summer. Division succeeds at almost any time of the year. 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: Flowers;  Stem.
Edible Uses: Salt.

Young flower stalks, used before the flower buds appear, are boiled until tender and seasoned with salt. Flower buds – cooked. Leafstalks – peeled and eaten raw. The ash of the plant is used as a salt substitute. To prepare the salt, the stems and leaves are rolled up into balls whilst still green, and after being carefully dried they are placed on top of a very small fire on a rock and burned.

Medicinal Uses:

Pectoral;  Salve;  TB.

The roots have been used in treating the first stages of grippe and consumption. The dried and grated roots have been applied as a dressing on boils, swellings and running sores. An infusion of the crushed roots has been used as a wash for sore eyes. A syrup for treating coughs and lung complaints has been made from the roots of this species combined with mullein(Verbascum sp.) and plum root (Prunus sp.).

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.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Petasites+palmatus
http://www.borealforest.org/herbs/herb27.htm
http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=pefrp

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Artemisia afra

Botanical Name ; Artemisia afra
Family: Asteraceae
Genus: Artemisia
Species: Artemisia afra
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Asterales

Common Names:wild wormwood, African wormwood (Eng.); wilde-als (Afr.); umhlonyane (Xhosa); mhlonyane (Zulu); lengana (Tswana); zengana (Southern Sotho)

Habitat :Artemisia afra has a  wide distribution from South Africa, to areas reaching to the North and East, as far north as Ethiopia. Artemisia afra is the only indigenous species in this genus.

Description:
Artemisia afra grows in thick, bushy, slightly untidy clumps, usually with tall stems up to 2 m high, but sometimes as low as 0.6 m. The stems are thick and woody at the base, becoming thinner and softer towards the top. Many smaller side branches shoot from the main stems. The stems are ribbed with strong swollen lines that run all the way up. The soft leaves are finely divided, almost fern-like. The upper surface of the leaves is dark green whereas the undersides and the stems are covered with small white hairs, which give the shrub the characteristic overall grey colour. A. afra flowers in late summer, from March to May. The individual creamy yellow flowers are small (3-4 mm in diameter), nodding and crowded at the tips of the branches. Very typical of A. afra is the strong, sticky sweet smell that it exudes when touched or cut.

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Medicinal Uses;
Artemisia afra is a well-known medicinal plant in Africa, and is still used effectively by people of many cultures. Uses range from treating cough, fever, colic, headache, to intestinal parasites and malaria. In addition, Artemisia afra is frequently used as a moth repellent, and in organic insecticidal sprays.

The roots, stems and leaves are used as enemas, poultices, infusions, lotions, inhaled (e.g. smoked or snuffed), or as an essential oil.

Artemisia afra is used in many different ways and one of the most common practices is to insert fresh leaves into the nostrils to clear blocked nasal passages. Another maybe not so common use is to place leaves in socks for sweaty feet. The roots, stems and leaves are used in many different ways and taken as enemas, poultices, infusions, body washes, lotions, smoked, snuffed or drunk as a tea. A. afra has a very bitter taste and is usually sweetened with sugar or honey when drunk. Wilde-als brandy is a very popular medicine still made and sold today. Margaret Roberts lists many other interesting uses which includes the use in natural insecticidal sprays and as a moth repellent.

Used mainly as an aqueous decoction or infusion applied externally or taken orally, the extremely bitter taste being masked by the addition of sugar or honey. Fresh leaf may be added to boiling water and the vapors inhaled.  For the treatment of cough, croup, whooping cough, influenza, fever, diabetes, gastro-intestinal disorders and intestinal worms.  As an inhalation for the relief of headache and nasal congestion or a lotion to treat hemorrhoids. In traditional practice, fresh leaf is inserted into the nostrils to relieve nasal congestion or placed in boiling water as a steam bath for menstrual pain or after childbirth. Warmed leaves may be applied externally as a poultice to relieve inflammation and aqueous infusions administered per rectum or applied as a lotion to treat hemorrhoids.  African Artemisia afra foliage was smoked by many Indian tribes to induce visionary states during religious ceremonies. It is a strong narcotic, analgesic and antihistamine. It is an excellent smoke or smoke-mix, reputed for its hallucinogenic effects and psychoactive properties. In Central America and the Caribbean Islands, it is dried and smoked along with Cannabis sativa as an aphrodisiac.  Volatile oils from the plant resulted in significant activity against Aspergillus ochraceus, A. niger, A. parasiticus, Candida albicans, Alternaria alternata, Geotrichum candidum, and Penicillium citrium

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/Artemisia_afra
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_UZ.htm
http://www.plantzafrica.com/plantab/artemisafra.htm
http://www.herbgarden.co.za/mountainherb/article_wildeals.htm

Senna ligustrina

Botanical Name :Senna ligustrina
Family :Fabaceae – Pea family
Genus : Senna Mill. – senna
Species: Senna ligustrina (L.) Irwin & Barneby – privet senna
Kingdom ; Plantae – Plants
Subkingdom:  Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
Superdivision: Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Division: Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
Class: Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Subclass: Rosidae
Order: Fabales

Synonyms: Senna ligustrina (L.) Irwin & Barneby

Common Names :Wild Coffee,Privet senna, Privet wild sensitive plant,Bahama Cassia

Habitat :Senna ligustrina grows in monroe County Keys north to Brevard, Okeechobee and Levy counties; West Indies and Central America. Very rare in the Monroe County Keys and perhaps confined to Big Pine Key and nearby islands.mostly available in forest edges.

Description:
Senna ligustrina is a medium shrubby wildflower tree,growing  to about 4-8 feet in height. Taller than broad. with erect stems and dark green leaves.Bloome yellow  color flower.

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Medicinal Uses:
The leaves have recorded uses as a drink and wash for skin disorders.  It is said to be good for problems of the kidneys like jaundice, for bladder problems like bed wetting, hence the colloquial name piss-a-bed.  It acts as a tonic for the liver, and also has a diuretic action.  The roots are used for treating jaundice, dropsy and liver troubles.  The leaves are employed in Cuba as a purge.

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://regionalconservation.org/beta/nfyn/plantdetail.asp?tx=Sennligu
http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=SELI9
http://www.butterflyworld.com/ECOMMERCE/proddetail.php?prod=Senna_ligustrina
http://www.floridanativenurseries.org/plants/detail/senna-ligustrina
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_UZ.htm

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Oenanthe aquatica

Botanical Name : Oenanthe aquatica
Family : Apiaceae – Carrot family
Genus : Oenanthe L. – waterdropwort
Species : Oenanthe aquatica (L.) Poir. – fineleaf waterdropwort
Kingdom : Plantae – Plants
Subkingdom : Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
Superdivision ; Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Division : Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
Class :Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Subclass: Rosidae
Order : Apiales

Synonyms :  Oenanthe phellandrium. Phellandrium aquaticum

Common Name : Water Dropwort, Water Fennel

Habitat :Water Dropwort  seen  in   Europe, including Britain, though absent from the far north, to W. Asia.It grows in slow moving or stagnant water, and by the sides of streams, avoiding acid conditions.

Description:
Oenanthe aquatica is a perennial plant, growing to 1.5 m (5ft). It is in flower from Jun to September. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees, flies, beetles.The plant is self-fertile.

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The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils.The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils..It cannot grow in the shade.It requires wet soil and can grow in water.

Cultivation:
Requires shallow water or a very wet fertile soil. Individual plants are biennial, dying after flowering. The plant perrenates, however, by means of offsets.

Propagation :
Seed – sow spring or late summer in situ.

Medicinal Uses:
Antiperiodic;  Diaphoretic;  Diuretic;  Expectorant;  Homeopathy;  Narcotic;  Pectoral.

The fruit is antiperiodic, diaphoretic, diuretic, expectorant and pectoral. It is used in the treatment of chronic pectoral affections, dyspepsia, intermittent fevers, obstinate ulcers etc. This plant should be used with great caution, and only under the supervision of an experienced practitioner. In overdose the fruits cause vertigo, intoxication and other narcotic effects. The roots have been used externally in the treatment of piles. A homeopathic remedy is made from the fruits. It is used in the treatment of bronchitis, coughs etc.

It is used in the treatment of chronic pectoral affections, dyspepsia, intermittent fevers, obstinate ulcers etc. This plant should be used with great caution, and only under the supervision of an experienced practitioner. In overdose the fruits cause vertigo, intoxication and other narcotic effects. The roots have been used externally in the treatment of piles. A homeopathic remedy is made from the fruits. It is used in the treatment of bronchitis, coughs etc.  The seeds have been most successfully used in chronic affections of the air-passages, as laryngitis, asthma, hemoptysis, catarrh, etc.; also in periodical febrile diseases, dyspeptic affections, and in indolent ulcerations.  It is used in consumption and bronchitis, to relieve troublesome cough, render expectoration less and easier, and produce sleep at night.

Known Hazards : All parts of the plant are poisonous. It is said to contain the alleged ‘psychotroph’ myristicine

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.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Oenanthe+aquatica
http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=OEAQ
http://species.wikimedia.org/wiki/Oenanthe_aquatica
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_UZ.htm

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