Tag Archives: Richard Mabey

Allium angulare

Botanical Name: Allium angulare
Family: Amaryllidaceae
Subfamily: Allioideae
Genus: Allium
Species: A. angulosum
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Asparagales

Synonyms: Allium angulosum, Allium angulatum Pall

Common Names: Mouse garlic

Habitat : Allium angulare is a species of garlic native to a wide region of central Europe and northern Asia, from France and Italy to Siberia and Kazakhstan.

.
Description:
Allium angulosum is a perennial herb up to 50 cm tall. It is a is a bulb which is narrow and elongated, about 5 mm in diameter. The plant produces a hemispherical umbel of small pink flowers on long pedicels. It is not frost tender. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees, insects…...CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES
Cultivation:
The plant prefers a sunny position in a light well-drained soil. The bulbs should be planted fairly deeply. Most members of this genus are intolerant of competition from other growing plants. Grows well with most plants, especially roses, carrots, beet and chamomile, but it inhibits the growth of legumes. This plant is a bad companion for alfalfa, each species negatively affecting the other. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer.

.
Propagation:
Seed – sow spring in a cold frame. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle – if you want to produce clumps more quickly then put three plants in each pot. Grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter and plant them out into their permanent positions in spring once they are growing vigorously and are large enough. Division in spring. Very easy, the plants divide successfully at any time in the growing season and the divisions can be planted straight out into their permanent positions if required.

.
Edible Uses:
Edible Parts: Flowers; Leaves; Root.
Bulb – raw or cooked. A winter food. Leaves – raw or cooked. Flowers – raw. Used as a garnish on salads.

.
Medicinal Uses:
Although no specific mention of medicinal uses has been seen for this species, members of this genus are in general very healthy additions to the diet. They contain sulphur compounds (which give them their onion flavour) and when added to the diet on a regular basis they help reduce blood cholesterol levels, act as a tonic to the digestive system and also tonify the circulatory system.

Other Uses :
Allium angulosum is cultivated as an ornamental and also as an herb for kitchen gardens.The juice of the plant is used as a moth repellent. The whole plant is said to repel insects and moles.

Known Hazards: Although no individual reports regarding this species have been seen, there have been cases of poisoning caused by the consumption, in large quantities and by some mammals, of certain members of this genus. Dogs seem to be particularly susceptible.

.
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/Allium_angulosum
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Allium+angulare

Crithmum maritimum

Botanical Name : Crithmum maritimum
Family: Apiaceae
Genus: Crithmum
Species: C. maritimum
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Apiales

Synonyms: Sea Fennel. Crest Marine. Sampier.
(German) Meerfenchel.
(Italian) Herba di San Pietra. Sanpetra.

Common Names : Samphire, Rock samphire, or Sea fennel, Crithmum maritimum

Habitat :Crithmum maritimum is found on southern and western coasts of Britain and Ireland, on mediterranean and western coasts of Europe including the Canary Islands, North Africa and the Black Sea. “Samphire” is a name also used for several other unrelated species of coastal plant.It grows on the cliffs and rocks, or more rarely on shingle or sand, by the sea.

Description:
Crithmum maritimum is a perennial herb, growing to 0.3 m (1ft) by 0.3 m (1ft in).Leaves are biternately or triternately compound; leaflets linear, fleshy, glaucous, 1/2 inch long. It is well distinguished by its long, fleshy, bright-green, shining leaflets (full of aromatic juice) and umbels of tiny, yellowish-green blossoms. The whole plant is aromatic and has a powerful scent.Flowers in compound umbels, very small, whaite or yellowish; fruit ovoid, ribbed, 1/4 inch long.
CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES
It is hardy to zone (UK) 6. It is in flower from Jun to August, and the seeds ripen from Aug to October. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.The plant is self-fertile.

 Cultivation:   
Prefers a moist light sandy or gravelly soil, doing very well between stones or by a south-east facing wall. Requires a warm dry well-drained sunny position and shade from the midday sun. Requires saline conditions. Plants are best grown in moist salty soil or a very well-drained poor dry soil. When grown away from the coast, this plant requires a warm sheltered position and some protection in cold winters. At one time this plant was sometimes cultivated in the vegetable garden, though it is quite difficult to do this successfully. It is difficult to grow outside its natural habitat.

Propagation:   
Seed – best sown as soon as it is ripe in the autumn. Sow in a cold frame and only just cover the seed. Germination usually takes place within 3 – 6 weeks at 15°c. One report says that the seed only has a short viability and should be sown as soon as it is ripe, but it has germinated well with us when sown in April 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. Division in spring

Edible Uses:
Rock samphire has fleshy, divided aromatic leaves that Culpeper described as having a “pleasant, hot and spicy taste”

The stems, leaves and seed pods may be pickled in hot, salted, spiced vinegar, or the leaves used fresh in salads.

Richard Mabey gives several recipes for samphire, although it is possible that at least one of these may refer to marsh samphire or glasswort (Salicornia europaea), a very common confusion.

Medicinal Uses:
Carminative;  Depurative;  Digestive;  Diuretic.

Rock samphire is little used in herbal medicine, though it is a good diuretic and holds out potential as a treatment for obesity. It has a high vitamin C and mineral content and is thought to relieve flatulence and to act as a digestive remedy. The young growing tips are carminative, depurative, digestive and diuretic. They are gathered when in active growth in the spring and used fresh. The leaves have the reputation for helping people lose weight and so are used in treating cases of obesity as well kidney complaints and sluggishness. The essential oil is a digestive, a few drops being sprinkled on the food.

Other Uses: An essential oil from the plant is used in perfumery.

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/Crithmum
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Crithmum+maritimum
http://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/s/samphi10.html
http://titanarum.uconn.edu/198501242.html

Caltha palustris

Botanical Name :   Caltha palustris
Family: Ranunculaceae
Genus: Caltha
Species: C. palustris
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Ranunculales

Common Name :Marsh Marigold,Kingcup

Other Names:
In the UK, Caltha palustris is known by a variety of common names, varying by geographical region. These include Marsh Marigold and Kingcup (the two most frequently used common names), Mayflower, May Blobs, Mollyblobs, Pollyblobs, Horse Blob, Water Blobs, Water Bubbles, Gollins. Balfae (in Caithness) and the Publican. The common name of marigold refers to its use in churches in medieval times at Easter time as a tribute to the Virgin Mary, as in Mary gold.

The specific name palustris, Latin for “of the marsh”, indicates its common habitat.

Richard Mabey, in Flora Britannica, describes Caltha palustris thus:

Marsh-marigolds are in decline as agricultural land continues to be drained, but they are still the most three-dimensional of plants, their fleshy leaves and shiny petals impervious to wind and snow, and standing in sharp relief against the tousled brown of frostbitten grasses. Most of the plant’s surviving local names – water-blobs, molly-blobs, water-bubbles – reflect this solidity, especially the splendid, rotund ‘the publican’ from Lancashire.”

In North America Caltha palustris is sometimes known as cowslip. However, cowslip more often refers to Primula veris, the original plant to go by that name. Both are herbaceous plants with yellow flowers, but Primula veris is much smaller.

In Latvia Caltha palustris is also known as Gundega which is also used as a girls name which symbolizes fire. The word Gundega is made from 2 words – uguns (fire) and dega (burned). This refers to the burning reaction that some people experience from contact with Caltha sap

Habitat :  Caltha palustris is native to marshes, fens, ditches and wet woodland in temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere.
It becomes most luxuriant in partial shade, but is rare on peat. In the UK, it is probably one of the most ancient British native plants, surviving the glaciations and flourishing after the last retreat of the ice, in a landscape inundated with glacial meltwaters.

Description:
Caltha palustris is a herbaceous perennial plant.Height is up to 80 centimetres (31 in) tall. The leaves are rounded to kidney-shaped, 3–20 centimetres (1.2–7.9 in) across, with a bluntly serrated margin and a thick, waxy texture. Stems are hollow.

click to see….>….(01)....(1)..…...(2)….(3).………..(4)..……..(5)....
The flowers are yellow, 2–5 cm (1–2 in) diameter, with 4-9 (mostly 5) petal-like sepals and many yellow stamens; they appear in early spring to late summer. The flowers are visited by a great variety of insects for pollen and for the nectar secreted from small depressions, one on each side of each carpel.
Cultivation:
A plant of the waterside, it prefers growing in a sunny position in wet soils or shallow water up to 15cm deep, though it will tolerate drier conditions if there is shade from the summer sun. Another report says that it grows best in partial shade. Requires a deep rich slightly alkaline soil. Grows well in heavy clay soils. Prefers a chalky soil. Tolerates a pH in the range 4.8 to 7.5. A very ornamental and polymorphic plant, there are some named varieties. Plants often self-sow when well sited. A good bee plant. A greedy plant, inhibiting the growth of nearby plants, especially legumes. This species is probably the most primitive flower in the British flora.

Propagation:
Seed – best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame in late summer. Stand the pots in 2 – 3cm of water to keep the soil wet. The seed usually germinates in 1 – 3 months at 15°c. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a tray of water in a cold frame until they are at least 15cm tall. Plant them out into their permanent positions in the summer. Division in early spring or autumn. 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 summer or following spring.

Edible Uses:
Root – must be well cooked. The raw root should not be eaten. Some caution is advised, see the notes above on toxicity. Flower buds – raw, cooked or pickled and used as a caper substitute. Eating the raw flower buds can lead to intoxication. Some caution is advised, see the notes above on toxicity. Young leaves – raw or cooked. The leaves are harvested in the spring as the plant is coming into flower and is used like spinach after cooking in two or more changes of water. Eating the raw leaves can lead to intoxication . Some caution is advised, see the notes above on toxicity. Older leaves, before the plant flowers, can be eaten if they are well cooked. Some caution is advised, see the notes below on toxicity.

Medicinal Uses;
Dr. Withering described a case in which a large bouquet of marsh marigolds brought into the sickroom of a spasmodic girl stopped her fits.  The cure was presumed a result of whatever the flowers exude.  Since then, the infusions have also been used to prevent fits.  A decoction of the herb has been used for dropsy and in urinary affections. The root tea induces sweating, is an emetic and an expectorant.  The leaf tea is a diuretic and a laxative.  Ojibwas mixed tea with maple sugar to make a cough syrup that was popular with colonists.  The syrup was used as a folk antidote to snake venom.  The plant contains anemonin and protoanemonin both with marginal antitumor activity.  It has also been used to treat warts: a drop of the leaf juice was applied daily until the wart disappeared.  The Chippewa applied the dried powdered and moistened or fresh root of cowslip twice daily to cure scrofula sores.

Other Uses:…..Dye..……A yellow dye is obtained from the flowers, a saffron substitute. It is used as a dye when mixed with alum, though it is not very permanent. Plants can be grown for ground cover when planted about 45cm apart each way.

Known Hazards:-
As is the case with many members of the Ranunculaceae, all parts of the plant are poisonous and can be irritant. Skin rashes and dermatitis have been reported from excessive handling of the plant. The whole plant, but especially the older portions, contains the toxic glycoside protoanemonin – this is destroyed by heat. The sap can irritate sensitive skin.

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.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_LMN.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caltha_palustris

http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Caltha+palustris

Enhanced by Zemanta