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Asphodelus ramosus

Botanical Name :Asphodelus ramosus
Family: Asphodelaceae
Subfamily: Asphodeloideae
Genus: Asphodelus
Species: A. ramosus
Order: Asparagales
Kingdom: Plantae

Synonyms: White Asphodel. Asphodele Rameux. Royal Staff. Branched Asphodel. King’s Spear.

Common Name:Common Asphodel

Habitat: Asphodelus ramosus is native to the Mediterranean region of southern Europe, northern Africa, and the Middle East. It can also be found in the Canary Islands. It is particularly common on the Catalan coast, where it shows an affinity for acidic soils, mainly schist. It is to be found close to the sea on the slopes of the Albères massif, where it forms abundant colonies in April to May.
Description:
Life form: Hemicryptophyte
Stems: Erect, single, glabrous branched scape
Leaves: Basal rosette; sessile from an underground stem; parallel venation, ensiform, smooth margin
Flowers: White with pink, stellate; 6 tepals with central reddish-brown mid-vein; 6 anthers, white firm filament and an orange anther; superior ovary.
The plant is about 3 feet high, with large, white, terminal flowers, and radical, long, numerous leaves. It is only cultivated in botanical and ornamental gardens, though it easily grows from seeds or division of roots.

The roots must be gathered at the end of the first year.

The ancients planted the flowers near tombs, regarding them as the form of food preferred by the dead, and many poems refer to this custom. The name is derived from a Greek word meaning sceptre.
Edible Uses: The roots, dried and boiled in water, yield a mucilaginous matter that in some countries is mixed with grain or potato to make Asphodel bread. In Spain and other countries they are used as cattle fodder, especially for sheep. In Barbary the wild boars eat them greedily.

In Persia, glue is made with the bulbs, which are first dried and then pulverized. When mixed with cold water, the powder swells and forms a strong glue.

Hippocrates, Dioscorides, and Pliny said the roots were cooked in ashes and eaten. The Greeks and Romans used them in several diseases, but they are not employed in modern medicine.
Constituents: An acrid principle separated or destroyed by boiling water, and a matter resembling inuline have been found. An alcohol of excellent flavour has been obtained from plants growing abundantly in Algeria.

Medicinal Uses:
Acrid, heating, and diuretic. Said to be useful inmenstrual obstructions and as an antispasmodic. The bruised root has been recommended for rapidly dissolving scrofulous swellings.
Disclaimer: This information is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advise or help. It is always best to consult with a Physician about serious health concerns. This information is in no way intended to diagnose or prescribe remedies.This is purely for educational purpose.

Resources:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asphodelus_ramosus
http://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/a/aspho080.html
http://www.flowersinisrael.com/Asphodelusaestivus_page.htm

 

Gillenia stipulata

Botanical Name : Gillenia stipulata
Family: Rosaceae
Genus: Gillenia
Species: G. stipulata
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Rosales

Synonym(s): Porteranthus stipulatus; spiraea stipulata, Porteranthus stipulatus. (Muhl. ex Willd.)Britt.

Common Name : American Ipecacuanna, American ipecac

Habitat : Gillenia stipulata   is native to  Eastern N. America – New York to Indiana and Kansas, south to Georgia, Louisiana and Oklahoma. It grows in woods, thickets and rocky slopes.

Description:
Gillenia stipulata is a  herbaceous, perennial  plant   growing to 1.2 m (4ft).  It is hardy to zone (UK) 5. It is in flower from May to June.  The stem  is erect, glabrous to pubescent, branching, multiple from base, sub-hollow, greenish to red above, from caudex, rhizomatous.. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.

Leaves – Alternate, stipulate, short-petiolate, trifoliolate. Stipules large, foliaceous, serrate, ovate, +/-2.5cm long and broad, pubescent below, glabrous ir sparse pubescent above. Leaflets sessile, linear-lanceolate, to 9cm long, 2cm broad, serrate, pubescent below, sparse pubescent above, central leaflet slightly larger than lateral leaflets. Leaflets of lowest leaves pinnatifid.

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Inflorescence – Axillary and terminal loose few-flowered panicles. Each divisions of inflorescence subtended by reduced foliaceous bract.

Flowers – Petals 5, white, acute to acuminate, 1.2cm long, 3-4mm broad, glabrous, oblong, clawed. Claw to 3mm long. Stamens 20, borne at edge of hypanthium, in two sets. Filaments white, glabrous, 2mm long. Anthers tan, 1mm in diameter. Pistils 5, distinct. Styles white, 3mm long, glabrous. Ovaries yellow-green, 1.9mm long. Hypanthium tube 5-6mm long, 3-4mm in diameter, greenish-white to reddish, truncate at base, glabrous. Sepals 5, acute, 1.1mm long, with some pubescence internally near apex. Follicles to 8mm long, glabrous, with +/-3 seeds.

A common name for this plant is “American Ipecac” because the plant had been used by natives as a laxative and emetic. This is not, however, the common Ipecac of modern medicine. Today’s Ipecac comes from Cephaelis ipecacuanha, a member of the Rubiaceae from South America.

Cultivation:
Easily grown in a rather moist but well-drained lime-free peaty soil in semi-shade. Succeeds in a sunny position but requires shade at the hottest part of the day.

Propagation:
Seed – sow spring or autumn in a cold frame. Prick out the seedlings when they are large enough to handle and grow on for the first year in a lightly shaded area of the greenhouse or cold frame. Plant out in late spring and protect from slugs until well established. Division in spring or autumn.
Medicinal Uses:
The dried powered root bark is cathatric, slightly diaphoretic,a mild and efficient  emetic,expectorant and tonic. Minute dosesare used internally in the treatment of colds, chronic diarrhea, constipation, asthma and other bronchial complications. The root have been used externally in the treatment of rhematism. A cold infution of the roots has been given , or the root   chewed  in the treatment of bee and insects stings.The roots are harvested in the autumn, the bark is removed and dried for later use. A tea made from the whole plant is strong laxative and emitic.Minute doses are used internally in the treatment of colds, indigestion, asthma and hepatitis.A poultice or wash is used in the treatment of rhematism,bee stings and swellings.A decoction or strong infution of the whole plant has been taken a pint at a time as an emitic.A poultice of the plant  has been used to treat leg swellings. The plant has been used in the treatment of toothaches.

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://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/ornamentals/cornell_herbaceous/plant_pages/Gilleniastipulata.html

http://www.robsplants.com/plants/GilleStipu

http://www.missouriplants.com/Whitealt/Gillenia_stipulata_page.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gillenia_stipulata

http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_IJK.htm

http://www.thealpinegarden.com/woodlandusa.htm

http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Gillenia+stipulata

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