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Herbs & Plants

Buxus wallichiana

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Botanical Name:Buxus wallichiana Baill
Family: Buxaceae
Genus: Buxus
Species: Buxus wallichiana

Common Name : Papri, Papdi

Habitat :  In moist hills in Afghanistan, Pakistan, India (Punjab, U.P., Kumaon) Nepal and Bhutan. North Himalayas; Kumaon, Wallich 7978 (K); Strachey and Winterbottom; Jumna valley, Jacquemont 694 (P).

Description:
An evergreen shrub or small tree, sometimes up to 10 m tall. Stem straight, bark ash grey, young shoots tetragonal, hirsute, hairs spreading. Leaves lanceolate oblanceolate or very narrowly obovate or elliptic oblong, 1.5-6 cm long, 0.8-l.2 cm broad, attenuate at the base, obtuse or somewhat emarginate or apiculate at the apex, glabrous except the hirsute petiole and midrib on upper side, veins conspicuous. Racemes 6-8 mm long, rounded. Floral parts akin to those of last species. Capsule ovoid, walnut brown, 7- 10 mm long, 5-6 mm in diameter, horns diver-gent, c. 2-3 mm long.

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It is hardy to zone 8. It is in leaf all year, in flower from April to May. The flowers are monoecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but both sexes can be found on the same plant) and are pollinated by Bees, flies.

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 and can grow in very alkaline soil. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It requires moist soil.

Cultivation:
Succeeds in almost any soil that is well-drained. Tolerates light shade and chalky soils[1, 200]. Tolerates a pH range from 5.5 to 7.4. This species is perfectly hardy in much of Britain, tolerating temperatures down to about -10°c, but it is very slow growing . The foliage is pungently scented, especially when wet.

Plants can be grown as a hedge, they are very tolerant of pruning but are slow growing.

Propagation:
Seed – stratification is not necessary but can lead to more regular germination. The seed is best sown in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe. Sow stored seed as early in the year as possible in a cold frame. It usually germinates in 1 – 3 months at 15°c but stored seed can take longer. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter, planting them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Cuttings of short side shoots with a heel, September in a frame. Difficult[182, 200]. Nodal cuttings in spring in a frame. Difficult

Medicinal Uses :
Bitter; Diaphoretic; Febrifuge; Purgative.

The wood is diaphoretic. The leaves are bitter, diaphoretic and purgative. They have proved useful in the treatment of rheumatism and syphilis. The bark is febrifuge.

Traditionally Buxus wallichiana is used as bittertonic, diaphoretic, anti-rheumatic, vermifuge, antihelmentic, analgesic, purgative, diuretic, antiepileptic, antileprotic and in hemorrhoids. This paper deals with the macroscopic, microscopic and powdered studies of Buxus wallichiana wood, along with this physical constants like ash values and extractive values and preliminary phytochemical analysis were studied. Preliminary phytochemical analysis shows the presence of steroids, alkaloids, flavonoids.

You may click to see :
EVALUATION OF HAIR GROWTH ACTIVITY OF BUXUS WALLICHIANA BAILL EXTRACT IN RATS  :

Other Uses:
The wood is uniformly light yellow to brownish yellow, smooth, hard, even tex¬tured, with silky lustre and without distinction between sap wood and heart wood. Boxwood is highly durable and is used for engravings, fine carving, turning and for manufacturing drawing, geometrical and musical instruments, snuff boxes and combs.

Scented Plants
Leaves: Crushed
The foliage is pungently scented, especially when wet.

Known Hazards:The leaves have been reported to be fatal to cattle and other browsing animals except goats. They taste bitter due to the presence of alkaloids like buxines.

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://server9.web-mania.com/users/pfafardea/database/plants.php?Buxus+wallichiana
http://species.wikimedia.org/wiki/Buxus_wallichiana
http://vaniindia.org.whbus12.onlyfordemo.com/herbal/plantdir.asp
http://www.efloras.org/florataxon.aspx?flora_id=5&taxon_id=242309443
http://scindeks.nb.rs/article.aspx?artid=1821-21581001051N

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Categories
Herbs & Plants

Astragalus multiceps

Botanical Name : Astragalus multiceps
Family : Leguminosae
Genus : Astragalus
Synonyms : Astragalus bicuspis – Fisch.
Common Name :Kandiara


Habitat
:E. Asia – W. Himalayas, to 3,500 metres in Garhwal, Kumaon and Simla.   Found at elevations of 1300 – 3300 metres in Tibet

Description:
Shrub growing to 0.45m.
It is hardy to zone 0. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees, Lepidoptera (Moths & Butterflies). It can fix Nitrogen.

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The plant prefers light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It requires dry soil.

Cultivation:
We have very little information on this species and do not know if it will be hardy in Britain, though judging by its native range it could succeed outdoors in many parts of this country. The following notes are based on the general needs of the genus. Requires a dry well-drained soil in a sunny position. Plants are intolerant of root disturbance and are best planted in their final positions whilst still small. This species has a symbiotic relationship with certain soil bacteria, these bacteria form nodules on the roots and fix atmospheric nitrogen. Some of this nitrogen is utilized by the growing plant but some can also be used by other plants growing nearby. Many members of this genus can be difficult to grow, this may be due partly to a lack of their specific bacterial associations in the soil.

Propagation:
Seed – best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame. A period of cold stratification may help stored seed to germinate. Stored seed, and perhaps also fresh seed, should be pre-soaked for 24 hours in hot water before sowing – but make sure that you do not cook the seed. Any seed that does not swell should be carefully pricked with a needle, taking care not to damage the embryo, and re-soaked for a further 24 hours. Germination can be slow and erratic but is usually within 4 – 9 weeks or more at 13°c if the seed is treated or sown fresh. As soon as it is large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for their first winter, planting them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts.

Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Flowers.

The calyx of the flower is eaten and has a sweetish flavour.

Medicinal Uses
Demulcent; Emollient.

The seeds are demulcent and emollient. They are used in the treatment of colic and leprosy.


Known Hazards :
Many members of this genus contain toxic glycosides. All species with edible seedpods can be distinguished by their fleshy round or oval seedpod that looks somewhat like a greengage. A number of species can also accumulate toxic levels of selenium when grown in soils that are relatively rich in that element.

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://server9.web-mania.com/users/pfafardea/database/plants.php?Astragalus+multiceps
http://vaniindia.org.whbus12.onlyfordemo.com/herbal/plantdir.asp

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