Categories
Herbs & Plants (Spices)

Plectranthus purpuratus

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Botanical Name: Plectranthus purpuratus
Family: Lamiaceae
Subfamily: Nepetoideae
Tribes: Ocimeae
Subtribes: Plectranthinae
Genus: Plectranthus
Subgenus: P. subg. Plectranthus
Sectio: P. sect. Plectranthus
Species: Plectranthus purpuratus

Common Name: Purple Spurflower, Vick’s Plant

Habitat : Plectranthus purpuratus is native to Eastern S Africa. It is grown on a cultivated bed.

Description:
Plectranthus purpuratus is a perennial   plant. It grows to a height of 1′  to 3′ and spreads tp 1′ to 3′. It can be grown under full sun to partly shed with midium moisture containt. It’s foilages are Colorful/Burgundy and showy and full of fragarance. It has various species.

Stems 12–14 in. high, branching, succulent and brittle, thinly puberulous or nearly glabrous; leaves 3/4 in. long, nearly as broad as long, in spreading subdistant decussate pairs, ovate or suborbicular, obtusely or obsoletely crenate, glabrous or nearly so, purple beneath; petioles 3–4 lin. long; inflorescence of paniculately arranged racemes; verticils laxly 6-flowered, not pedunculate; bracts 1 1/4 lin. long, 1/2 lin. broad, ovate-lanceolate, acute; pedicels 2 lin. long; fruiting calyx 3 lin. long; flowering calyx 1 1/4 lin. long, campanulate; upper tooth broadly ovate, acute; other 4 teeth lanceolate, 2 lower the longest; corolla white (Wood); tube 2 1/2 lin. long, nearly straight; upper lip 1 lin. long, 4-lobed and with crenate margins, 2 terminal lobes obovate, lateral lobes oblong rounded; lower lip as long as the upper; nutlets 3/4 lin. long and broad, subglobose, dark brown, almost black. null

Its spreading habit and richly colored leaves suit it for the outdoor garden in frost-free climates or a container in almost any climate.It has dark-green elongated, oval. sharp tipped leaves with serrated edges. When new, the leaves have a distinctive purple cast in certain seasons. The plant is vigorous with a prostrate habit, spreading or dangling gracefully. Being a tender plant, it must come indoors for the winter or be killed by even the mildest frost.

Though Purple Spurflower is grown as a foliage plant, it blooms off an on throughout the year with small pale purple flowers. If they interfere with the foliage effect they can be cut off at bud stage. This plant demands very well drained, light, humus rich soil with even moisture. Typical potting soil is ideally formulated, provided the container offers good drainage. Regular light fertilization keeps the foliage fresh and well colored. While this ground ivy takes full sun when grown in the diffused light and cooler temperatures of coastal regions, it will demand far more protection and bright shade in dry inland locales. Few plants cascade down large pots as nicely as this, offering vigorous foliage beauty for elegant compositions over a long season.
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Medicinal Uses:
The leaves can be steeped in boiling water to vaporize the characteristic oils which are then inhaled, helping to clear nasal and respiratory passages. The leaves can also be applied as a poultice, or prepared in petroleum jelly-based ointments. Vasoline petroleum jelly works well.
Other Uses: This plant is suitable for ground cover, bed & boder design. It is mosquito replant.

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://species.wikimedia.org/wiki/Plectranthus_purpuratus
http://www.learn2grow.com/plants/plectranthus-purpuratus/
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_UZ.htm

http://plants.jstor.org/compilation/plectranthus.purpuratus

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Categories
News on Health & Science

Miracle of grease (Veselene)

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Chloe Rhodes examines the origins of petroleum jelly and reveals why it is so popular :

Last month, a reader of the Daily Telegraph wrote to the paper’s GP columnist to report the miraculous   healing properties of Vaseline. She had repeatedly applied a coat of the bathroom cabinet staple to two troublesome scars on her leg, which quickly disappeared, and then to a mole on her face that subsequently   dropped off.

A week after her letter was published, the newspaper’s mail bag was bulging with letters singing the praises of petroleum jelly for the treatment of everything from nappy rash and chapped lips to psoriasis and piles. One reader said it is the best face cream she had ever used   a beauty secret she shared with Hollywood stars Joan Collins, Meg Ryan and Scarlett Johansson.

But what is it that makes this pot of grease so great?

Vaseline was discovered in 1859 by an English-born American chemist, Robert Augustus Chesebrough. On a visit to the oilrigs in Pennsylvania, he noticed that the workers used a sticky petroleum by-product that accumulated around the drill rods to help heal cuts and burns. After almost a decade of research, he perfected a process for distilling from this residue a translucent, odourless gel he called petroleum jelly. In 1872, Vaseline was registered as a trademark.

There are two theories about how the name developed. One is that it is a blend of the German word for water   wasser  and the Greek word for oil  elaion, the other that Chesebrough named it after the vases in which he used to store his mysterious new product during his research.

Unable to generate interest from bulk buyers, he loaded up a horse-drawn wagon with one-ounce bottles of his new   wonder jelly  and touted it across New York state. He deliberately burned patches of his skin to demonstrate Vaseline’s healing powers   and within two years he was selling a jar a minute.

Chesebrough was convinced that his discovery contained some magical chemical, insisting that he be covered from head to toe in the stuff when he was diagnosed with pleurisy (from which, incidentally, he recovered). But in fact, there is no secret active ingredient. Vaseline promotes faster healing simply by creating the best conditions for the skin to heal itself.

Professor John Hawk, honorary  consultant dermatologist at St Thomas Hospital, London, explains,  Vaseline is an occlusive moisturizer, which means that it creates a barrier on the surface of the skin. This is beneficial because it helps the skin to retain moisture, which is crucial to the healing process, and also because it keeps wounds sterile by preventing harmful bacteria from getting in.

These two attributes are what give Vaseline its cure-all reputation. Ailments such as cold sores and the blisters caused by shingles are eased by Vaseline because it keeps the skin around them remain moist and supple, which stops the scabs from cracking and falling off too soon.

It is useful as a face cream for the same reason   the more moisture that can be retained in the skin, the plumper and less wrinkled it looks. Dry skin conditions, including eczema and even psoriasis, benefit from this added moisturisation too, but also from the fact that a Vaseline barrier reduces the penetration of irritants.   Eczema is probably caused by allergy-causing molecules getting into the skin,  says Prof. Hawk. Any occlusive moisturiser would help to prevent this, but Vaseline is more bland than most, there are no perfumes or colourants, so it is less likely to cause irritation.

Nappy rash, caused by the chafing of a wet nappy, can be prevented by the application of a thin layer of Vaseline to the baby’s bottom, and this sealant quality has also been suggested in the British Medical Journal as a means of staunching a nose bleed when applied just inside the nostrils, though more research is needed to test its effectiveness.

Even mouth ulcers, which are notoriously tricky to shift, can be successfully treated if dabbed dry with a tissue before being coated in a layer of gel   which protects ulcers from the acid in the mouth and allows them to heal. Fresh burns, however, should not be treated with Vaseline until the area has cooled.

Emilie Lien from Unilever, which now owns the brand, is delighted by the enthusiasm of consumers for her product.  None of these uses are   official, but it’s amazing how people have developed so many different uses for just one product. We now make 15 million jars of petroleum jelly each year so we know there’s a huge demand. In fact, over a ton of Vaseline has been used since 1981 just to help protect London Marathon runners from chafing and blistered toes.

And the miraculous mole removal? Prof. Hawk thinks he may have an explanation:   It seems unlikely that moisturising could remove a true mole from within the skin, but it could help to get rid of seborrhoeic keratoses   harmless, crusty growths that are often pigmented like moles but look as if they  are stuck to the surface of the skin. It’s not a clinically proven method, but the good thing about Vaseline is that it’s so bland you can use it as much as you like.

It certainly didn’t do Robert Chesebrough any harm   he lived to the age of 96 and attributed his longevity to the spoonful of Vaseline he ate every day.

Source: The Telegraph (Kolkata,India)

Categories
Healthy Tips

Petroleum Jelly Can Save Your Money & Time

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If you have petroleum jelly in the house, one of these 31 tips could save you money — and time.

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For Personal Grooming

Moisturize your lips and more If you don’t want to pay a lot for expensive lip balm, makeup remover, or even facial moisturizer, then your answer is a tube of petroleum jelly. It can soothe lips, take off foundation, eye shadow, mascara, and more. It will even act as a moisturizer on your face.

Make emergency makeup:

Oh no! You’ve run out of your favorite shade of eye shadow. What do you do now? It’s easy — make your own. Add a bit of food coloring to petroleum jelly and apply as usual. This is a quick way to make stopgap blush, lipstick, or eye shadow.

Lengthen the life of perfume:

You’ve picked out a great scent to wear on your night out, but it’s got to last. Worry not. Dab a bit of petroleum jelly on your pulse points. Then spray on the perfume. Now you can dance the night away and not worry about your perfume turning in early.

Remove a stuck ring:

Is your wedding ring stuck? Trying to get it off can take a lot of tug and pull. Apply some petroleum jelly and it will glide right off.

Soften chapped hands:

If you’re constantly applying hand lotion to your tired, chapped hands, but then taking it off again so you can get more work done, try this tip. Apply a liberal amount of petroleum jelly to your hands just before you go to bed. By morning, they’ll be soft and smooth.

No more messy manicures :

During home manicures, it’s hard to keep the nail polish from running over on your cuticles. Petroleum jelly can help your manicures look more professional. Dab some along the base of your nails and the sides. If polish seeps off the nail during the manicure, all you do is wipe off the petroleum jelly and the sloppy nail polish is gone.

Smooth wild eyebrow hairs:

If you have runaway eyebrows — the ones where the hairs won’t lie flat but curl up instead, control the wildness with some petroleum jelly. Rub a dab into your brows. They’ll calm down and behave.

Stop hair dye runs:

There’s nothing more embarrassing than a home hair color job gone awry. Imagine finishing applying that new auburn shade to your tresses when you notice that you’ve dyed your hairline and part of your forehead too. Next time, run a bit of petroleum jelly across your hairline. If dye seeps off your hair, the petroleum jelly will catch it.

Heal windburned skin:

You’ve just had a glorious hike through the countryside in autumn. And as much as you enjoyed the changing colors of the season, the hike has left you with an unpleasant souvenir: windburn. Grab a jar of petroleum jelly and apply it liberally to your face or wherever you’ve been chapped. The jelly helps relieve the pain.

Help prevent diaper rash:

It’s so heartbreaking to hear a baby experiencing the pain of diaper rash. Help is just a few moments away. Petroleum jelly sets up a protective coat on the skin so the rash can heal. No more pain.

No more shampoo tears:

Thinking of buying special no-tears shampoo for your child? Forget about it. If you have some petroleum jelly, you have the solution. Rub a fair amount into your baby’s eyebrows. It acts as a protective shield against shampoo running down into his eyes.

The Following Links will give you more Uses: Around The House For the Do-It-Your selferTaken From :Extraordinary Uses For Ordinary Things