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Herbs & Plants (Spices)

Claytonia sibirica

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Botanical Name : Claytonia sibirica
Family: Montiaceae
Genus: Claytonia
Species: C. sibirica
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Caryophyllales

Synonyms: Claytonia alsinoides. C. sibirica.

Common Names: Siberian Spring Beauty, Siberian Miner’s Lettuce, Candy Flower or Pink Purslane

Habitat:Claytonia sibirica is native to E. Asia – Siberia. Western N. America – Alaska to California. Naturalized in Britain. It grows on damp woods, shaded streamsides etc, especially on sandy acid soils. Thickets of red alder, dogwood, vine-leaf maple, moist shaded coniferous forests from sea level to 2000 metres.

Description:
Claytonia sibirica is a short-lived perennial or annual flowering plant with hermaphroditic flowers which are protandrous and self-fertile. The numerous fleshy stems form a rosette and the leaves are lanceolate. The flowers are 8-20 mm diameter, with five white, candy-striped, or pink petals, flowering is between February and August.

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It is not frost tender. It is in leaf 12-Jan It is in flower from Apr to July, and the seeds ripen from Jun to August. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees, flies.The plant is self-fertile.

Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very acid soils.

It can grow in full shade (deep woodland) semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers dry or moist soil.

Cultivation:
A very tolerant and easily grown plant, it prefers a moist peaty soil and is unhappy in dry situations. It succeeds in full sun though is happier when given some shade and also grows in the dense shade of beech trees. Plants usually self-sow freely. This is an excellent and trouble-free salad plant. It is extremely cold-hardy and can provide edible leaves all year round in all areas of the country even if it is not given protection.

Propagation:
Seed – sow spring or autumn in situ. The seed usually germinates rapidly.

Edible Uses:
Leaves – raw or cooked. They usually have a fairly bland flavour and are quite nice in a salad or cooked as a green vegetable. The leaves have a distinct earthy after-taste rather like raw beetroot. They are available all year round but can turn rather bitter in the summer, especially if the plant is growing in a hot dry position. Although on the small side, the leaves are produced in abundance and are very easily harvested.
Medicinal Uses:
The plant is diuretic. A poultice of the chewed leaves has been applied to cuts and sores. The juice of the plant has been used as eye drops for sore red eyes. A cold infusion of the stems has been used as an antidandruff wash for the hair.

Other Uses:
A good ground cover plant for a shady position. This species is a short-lived perennial but it usually self-sows freely and gives a dense weed-excluding ground cover

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/Claytonia_sibirica
http://www.pfaf.org/user/plant.aspx?latinname=Claytonia+sibirica

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Herbs & Plants

Codium fragile

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Botanical Name : Codium fragile
Family: Codiaceae
Genus: Codium
Species: C. fragile
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Chlorophyta
Class: Bryopsidophyceae
Order: Bryopsidales

Common Names :Green sea fingers, Dead man’s fingers, Felty fingers, Felt-alga, Green sponge and  Green fleece

Habitat :Codium fragile is native to the Pacific Ocean. The species inhabits the middle and lower intertidal zone as well as subtidal regions of rocky shores.

It is also found in large tide pools permanently filled with water. Therefore it is found at Race Rocks. At Race Rocks in 2001, the species occurred in only two small areas, although it was found when diving in earlier years in larger beds, shallow subtidally on the south side of Bentinck Island just across Race Passage north from Race Rocks. On the north side of the Great Race, there was one plant in a tide pool, and on the South East side, several dozen plants have occurred since the early 1980’s along the zero tide level of the small peninsula island. In 2004 it has been observed in several tidepools however its population still remains limited.

Description:
Codium fragile is a dark green alga, ranging from ten to 40 cm high and consists of repeatedly branching cylindrical segments about 0.5 to 1.0 cm in diameter, and the branches can be as thick as pencil. The segments look like dark green fingers. Its holdfast is a broad, sponge like cushion of tissue. The tips of segments are blunt and the surface is soft, so it is sometimes mistaken as a sponge. Its body consists of interwoven, filamentous cells with incomplete crosswalls forming the inner part of the branches.

Click to see the picture

A number of subspecies have been described, some of which have been introduced in various parts of the world. Although two spubspecies were widely accepted as having been introduced into Britain and Ireland, recent detailed genetic studies have shown that this is not the case.

Medicinal Uses;
In China, used to clear away heat and toxic materials, reduce tumescence and nourish dampness and driving bug. For edema, difficulty of pisses, driving lumbricoid and drink.

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/Codium_fragile
http://massbay.mit.edu/exoticspecies/exoticmaps/images/codium_big.jpg
http://myweb.dal.ca/rescheib/codium.html
http://www.seaweed.ie/descriptions/Codium_fragile.html
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_C.htm

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