Plant used for/Oil
Please add more about plants that are used for Oil here!
- Used for oil, whether as a fuel or as a food.
For more information
Here is EcoReality's seed inventory for plants that are used as Oil:
|ID||common name||family||latin name||date||quantity||action||days to germ||propagation||days to maturity||habitat||sun||drainage||soil||inventory||notes||nutrients||needs||use|
|259||Alfalfa||Fabaceae||Medicago sativa (dg fo pf wp)||Pre-soak the seed for 12 hours in warm water and then sow in spring in situ. The seed can also be sown in situ in autumn. Seed can be obtained that has been inoculated with Rhizobium bacteria, enabling the plant to succeed in soils where the bacteria is not already present. Alfalfa can adapt to a wide range of climatic conditions from cold temperate to warm sub-tropical, but thrives best on a rich, friable, well-drained loamy soil with loose topsoil supplied with lime. It does not tolerate waterlogging and fails to grow on acid soils. Grows well on light soils. Alfalfa is a very deep rooting plant, bringing up nutrients from deep in the soil and making them available for other plants with shallower root systems. It is a good companion plant for growing near fruit trees and grape vines so long as it is in a reasonably sunny position, but it does not grow well with onions or other members of the Allium genus.||Hardy to zone 5. In flower June to July. Seeds ripen July to September. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by bees, lepidoptera, self. Self-fertile.||partial shade||well drained||poor||0 each||Leaves and young shoots - raw or cooked. The leaves can also be dried for later use. The seed is commonly sprouted which is added to salads, used in sandwiches etc or cooked in soups. The seed is soaked in warm water for 12 hours, then kept moist in a container in a warm place to sprout. It is ready in about 4 - 6 days. The seeds can also be ground into a powder and used as a mush, or mixed with cereal flours for making a nutritionally improved bread etc. An appetite-stimulating tea is made from the leaves.
Alfalfa leaves, either fresh or dried, have traditionally been used as a nutritive tonic to stimulate the appetite and promote weight gain. The plant has an oestrogenic action and could prove useful in treating problems related to menstruation and the menopause. The plant is grown commercially as a source of chlorophyll and carotene, both of which have proven health benefits. The leaves also contain the anti-oxidant tricin. The root is febrifuge and is also prescribed in cases of highly coloured urine. Extracts of the plant are antibacterial. Used for asthma, diabetes, gastrointestinal disorders (anti-ulcer).
|Nitrogen, Protein, Vitamin A, Vitamin B, Vitamin C, Vitamin K||Anodyne, Antibacterial, Antiscorbutic, Aperient, Beverage, Diuretic, Dye, Emetic, Febrifuge, Food, Forage, Haemostatic, Mulch, Nutritive, Oil, Stimulant, Tonic|
|16||Bayberry; Candleberry Myrtle||Myricaceae||Myrica cerifera (dg fo pf wp)||2013-04-20 00:00:00||other||Sow in outdoor nursery bed or outdoor flats in the fall, winter, or very early spring, or cold- condition 6 weeks. Scarify before planting by rubbing on medium grit sandpaper. Space trees at least 15 feet apart.||Plant prefers full sun.||full sun||50 each||Perennial, dioecious, evergreen shrub to small tree to 25 feet. Native to the southern US.
The root bark is a valuable stimulating astringent employed for treating diarrhea and dysentery. Bayberry root bark powder is an oldtime apothecary item.The wax that surrounds the seeds is a high grade plant wax that burns clear -- aromatic to the max.
|Antibacterial, Astringent, Dye, Emetic, Fragrance, Hedge, Narcotic, Oil, Sternutatory, Stimulant, Tonic, Wood|
|248||Butterfly Weed; Pleurisy Root||Apocynaceae||Asclepias tuberosa (dg fo pf wp)||30||Seed best sown in a greenhouse as soon as it is ripe in the autumn or in late winter. We have also had good results from sowing the seed in the greenhouse in early spring, though stored seed might need 2 - 3 weeks cold stratification. Germination usually takes place in 1 - 3 months at 18°c. As soon as the seedlings are large enough to handle, prick them out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for their first winter. Plant out when they are in active growth in late spring or early summer and give them some protection from slugs until they are growing away strongly.
Division in spring. With great care since the plant resents root disturbance. Pot the divisions up and place them in a lightly shaded position in the greenhouse until they are growing away strongly, then plant them out in the summer, giving them some protection from slugs until they are established.
Basal cuttings in late spring. Use shoots about 10cm long with as much of their white underground stem as possible. Pot them up individually and place them in a lightly shaded position in a greenhouse until they are rooting and growing actively. If the plants grow sufficiently, they can be put into their permanent positions in the summer, otherwise keep them in the greenhouse until the following spring and when they are in active growth plant them out into their permanent positions. Give them some protection from slugs until they are established.
Prefers a well-drained light, rich or peaty soil. Prefers a sandy soil and a sunny position. Prefers a slightly acid soil. Prefers a dry soil. Plants are hardy to about -20°c.Plants should be pot-grown from seed and planted out in their permanent positions when young. Plants are particularly at risk from slugs, however, and some protection will probably be required until the plants are established and also in the spring when the new shoots come into growth. The flower can trap insects between its anther cells, the struggles of the insect in escaping ensure the pollination of the plant.
|sun or partial shade||well drained||rich||0 each||*Flower buds - cooked. They taste somewhat like peas.
Pleurisy root is a bitter, nutty-flavoured tonic herb that increases perspiration, relieves spasms and acts as an expectorant. It was much used by the North American Indians and acquired a reputation as a heal-all amongst the earlier white settlers. Its main use in present day herbalism is for relieving the pain and inflammation of pleurisy. The root was very popular as a medicinal herb for the treatment of a range of lung diseases, it was considered especially useful as an expectorant.
It has also been used internally with great advantage in the treatment of diarrhoea, dysentery, rheumatism etc. Use with caution; this remedy should not be prescribed for pregnant women.The root is harvested in the autumn and can be used fresh or dried. A poultice of the dried, powdered roots is used in the treatment of swellings, bruises, wounds, ulcers, lameness etc.
|Antispasmodic, Carminative, Cathartic, Diaphoretic, Diuretic, Expectorant, Insectiary, Latex, Oil, Ornamental, Pollution, Poultice, Stuffing, Sweetening, Tonic, Vasodilator|
|6||Camelina; Gold of Pleasure; Wild Flax; German Sesame; Siberian Oilseed||Brassicaceae||Camelina sativa (dg fo pf wp)||2012-04-12 00:00:00||50% germ||Prepare a weed-free seedbed in spring. Sprinkle the seed on the surface of the bed and press in. Keep evenly moist until germination. Harvest when the seed is fully mature and hard.||Easy to grow and high yielding, even on marginal land. Requires little or no input of fertilizer or water to achieve a good crop. Excellent choice for dryland farming and as a rotation crop for wheat or other grains.||full sun||drought tolerant||poor||10 each||Hardiness: All zones. Annual native to Northern Europe.
An ancient oilseed crop that is experiencing a resurgence of popularity due to three major factors:
1) easy to grow and high yielding, even on marginal land. Requires little or no input of fertilizer or water to achieve a good crop. Excellent choice for dryland farming and as a rotation crop for wheat or other grains.
2) a heat stabile and deliciously edible oil that has excellent shelf life can be cold pressed from the seeds. Very high in unsaturated fatty acids, the oil is loaded with health promoting Omega 3 fatty acids and vitamin E. The oil is a delicious raw condiment, and is a stabile and tasty cooking oil. The seeds themselves are excellent for feeding to poultry, giving exceptional egg production. Other stock can benefit from the feed value of this seed, as well.
3) this is one of the best crops for producing biodiesel. The plant is hardy to the temperate north and gives high yields of clean burning fuel. Interestingly, there are efforts afoot to limit the distribution of Camelina seed, and producers have worked out complex multi-level contracts aimed at cornering the market and fueling corporations instead of promoting self-sufficiency. We take issue with such things.
The plant has been used by humans for at least 4,000 years (remains in Switzerland date it to the Neolithic). Making this little weedy wonder into an exclusive botanical in modern times is not moving in the direction of cooperation. We offer the seed up to the public domain, and hope that many of you will grow it experimentally, and work your clean little patches up into commercially viable fields within a few years.
Camelina gives fast turnaround and high yield per input. The photo is of our recent germ test of this seed.
This species is a bad companion plant, depressing the growth of nearby plants. It has become a noxious weed of cultivated fields in some of the areas into which it has been introduced.An oil from the seed is used as a luminant and as an emollient for softening the skin. A fibre is obtained from the stems. The stems are used for making brooms.
|Fat, Fat: Omega-3||Emollient, Fibre, Food, Forage, Fuel, Oil|
|323||Chamomile||Asteraceae||Chamaemelum nobile (dg fo pf wp)||2013-06-24 00:00:00||56 each starts in greenhouse soil||transplant||Seed - sow March in a cold frame. Only just cover the seed and do not let the compost dry out. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out into their permanent positions in the summer. Division in 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. Basal cuttings in spring. Harvest the shoots when they are about 5cm long with plenty of underground stem. Pot them up into individual pots and keep them in light shade in a cold frame or greenhouse until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the summer. Tolerates most well-drained soils, preferring a dry sandy soil and a sunny position[4, 37, 200]. Tolerates partial shade. Established plants are drought tolerant. Can be grown in grass. Tolerates a pH in the range 6.8 to 8. Plants are hardy to at least -15°c. They often deteriorate in very wet or cold winters, but usually recover quickly in the spring and early summer. Chamomile is commonly grown in the domestic herb garden, it is also cultivated commercially for its flowers which are used in herb teas and medicinally. The double-flowered form is highly regarded for its medicinal virtues. Plants can be invasive when growing in good conditions, though they are easy to control[K]. There is some confusion between this plant (which is a perennial) and the annual chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla) as to which is the genuine medicinal chamomile. Some reports say that this plant is the most effective herbally, whilst others says that Matricaria is more potent. Both plants seem to have very similar properties and either can probably be used quite successfully. Camomile is a very good companion plant, promoting the health of plants it is growing close to, it is especially good for growing near cabbages, onions and, in small quantities, wheat[4, 14, 20, 54, 201, 238]. The cultivar 'Treneague' is a low-growing non-flowering form that makes an excellent ground cover. Fairly tolerant of being walked on, it is sometimes used instead of grass for making a lawn though it is more difficult to maintain and can become weed infested, especially in its early stages. It also tends to become bare in places. The whole plant has a pungent aroma, this being especially noticeable on hot days or when the plant is bruised.||Ground Cover; Lawn; Cultivated Beds; East Wall. In. South Wall. In. West Wall. In.||sun or partial shade||well drained||poor||Camomile is a common herb with a long history of safe and effective medicinal use - it is widely used as a household herbal remedy. It is particularly useful as a remedy for various problems of the digestive system, as a sedative and a nervine, it is especially suited for young children[4, 20, 21]. A tea is made from the flowers and this should be prepared in a closed vessel to prevent loss of the essential oils. The flowers are anodyne, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, nervine, stomachic, tonic, vasodilator[4, 14, 21, 37, 165, 201]. The single-flowered form is the most potent medicinally, though it can in large doses damage the lining of the stomach and bowels. For this reason, the double-flowered form is usually preferred since this contains less of the alkaloid that causes the problem. The flowers are gathered in the summer when they are fully open and are distilled for their oil or dried for later use. They should not be stored for longer than 12 months. The whole herb is used to make a lotion for external application in the treatment of toothache, earache, neuralgia etc. The essential oil is used in aromatherapy. Its keyword is 'Soothing'. The German Commission E Monographs, a therapeutic guide to herbal medicine, approve Chamaemelum nobile for coughs and bronchitis, fevers and colds, inflammations of the skin, inflammation of the mouth and pharynx, tendency to infection - improve immunity, wounds and burns (see  for critics of commission E).
An infusion of the flowers is used as a hair shampoo, especially for fair hair[14, 20, 168]. It is also used as a liquid feed and general plant tonic, effective against a number of plant diseases[18, 20, 201]. It has fungicidal properties and its use is said to prevent damping off in seedlings. The flowers are an ingredient of 'QR' herbal compost activator. This is a dried and powdered mixture of several herbs that can be added to a compost heap in order to speed up bacterial activity and thus shorten the time needed to make the compost[K]. The whole plant was formerly used as a strewing herb[4, 168]. The whole plant is insect repellent both when growing and when dried[14, 20]. An essential oil from the whole plant is used as a flavouring and in perfumery. Yellow to gold dyes are obtained from the flowers. The plant makes a very good ground cover and can also be used as an edging plant. It does tend to become bare in patches.
|Anodyne, Antiinflammatory, Antispasmodic, Aromatherapy, Compost, Dye, Essential, Food, Fungicide, Insect repellant, Nervine, Stomachic, Strewing, Tonic, Vasodilator|
|4||Chaste Tree||Verbenaceae||Vitex agnus-castus (dg fo pf wp)||2013-04-26 00:00:00||112 each seeds in 8cc blocks||plant||21||Standard greenhouse cultivation works best on these seeds, with germ after 3 or 4 weeks of warm, moist treatment.
Seed sow March in a warm greenhouse. The seed does not need pre-treatment. Germination is usually free and quick. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and grow them on in the greenhouse for their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in early summer of the following year.
Cuttings of half-ripe wood, 5 - 8cm with a heel, July/August in a frame. Good percentage. Cuttings of mature wood of the current seasons growth, November in a cold frame.
Prefers a light well-drained loamy soil in a warm sunny position sheltered from cold drying winds. Succeeds in dry soils. Intolerant of water-logging. Hardy to about -10°c.
Plants only flower freely in a warm summer, so they are best grown against a sunny wall even in areas of the country where they are hardy. The flowers are produced so late in the season that they are unlikely to produce viable seed in this country even if they flower properly.
A very ornamental plant, there are some named varieties. The whole plant is aromatic, the leaves and stems are strongly aromatic, the flowers are deliciously scented and the dried seeds have a pungent lemony perfume.This species has long been regarded as a symbol of chastity. Flowers are produced at the ends of the current year's growth. Any pruning is best carried out in the spring and should consist of cutting out dead wood and shortening last year's flowering branches.
|Germ: warm, moist, greenhouse.||well drained||loam||100 each||The leaves and flowers exude exotic aromas. Seeds regulate hormones and support breast health.
Used for thousands of years for its beneficial affect on the female hormonal system. Prolonged usage restores corpus luteum function.
The berries of this plant have a range of medicinal actions but possibly the most important is its ability to rectify hormonal imbalances caused by an excess of oestrogen and an insufficiency of progesterone. It acts upon the pituitary gland, reducing the production of certain hormones and increasing the production of others, shifting the balance in favour of the gestagens. Thus it has a wide application of uses in malfunctions of the feminine reproductive system and has been used with great effect in restoring absent menstruation, regulating heavy periods, restoring fertility when this is caused by hormonal imbalance, relieving pre-menstrual tension and easing the change of menopause.
Some caution is advised since excessive doses can cause a nervous disorder known as formication, which manifests as a sensation of insects crawling over the skin.
The berries are considered to be an aphrodisiac, though other reports say that they are anaphrodisiac. The reason for this apparent disagreement is that the berries have a regulating effect on the body and so are likely to increase sexual activity in those who are not very active in this area whilst reducing it in those who are very active. The fresh berries are pounded to a pulp and used in the form of a tincture for the relief of paralysis, pains in the limbs, weakness etc.
Other uses include: reduced flatulence, suppress appetite and induce sleep. Unproven uses include: treatment of impotence, prostatitis, swelling of the testes, sterility, swelling of the ovaries.A perfume is made from the flowers. Young stems are used in basket making. A yellow dye is obtained from the leaves, the seed and the roots. Wood - hard, close grained.
|Anaphrodisiac, Aphrodisiac, Basketry, Diaphoretic, Diuretic, Dye, Essential, Febrifuge, Fragrance, Galactogogue, Infertility, Ophthalmic, Seasoning, Sedative, Stomachic, Wood|
|263||Chestnut, American||Fagaceae||Castanea dentata (dg fo pf wp)||2013-04-02 00:00:00||10 each starts in outdoor soil||transplant||Seed: where possible sow the seed as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame or in a seed bed outdoors. The seed must be protected from mice and squirrels. The seed has a short viability and must not be allowed to become dry. It can be stored in a cool place, such as the salad compartment of a fridge, for a few months if it is kept moist, but check regularly for signs of germination. The seed should germinate in late winter or early spring. If sown in an outdoor seedbed, the plants can be left in situ for 1 - 2 years before planting them out in their permanent positions. If grown in pots, the plants can be put out into their permanent positions in the summer or autumn, making sure to give them some protection from the cold in their first winter.
Prefers a good well-drained slightly acid loam but succeeds in dry soils and in hot sunny sites. Once established, it is very drought tolerant. Very tolerant of highly acid, infertile dry sands.
Averse to calcareous soils but succeeds on harder limestones. Although it is very winter-hardy, this species only really thrives in areas with hot summers. A tree at Kew in 1985 was 15 metres tall and thriving.
At one time widely cultivated in N. America for its edible seed, it is now virtually extinct in the wild due to chestnut blight. Trees are possibly becoming resistant, some suckering stands in America are producing fruit. Suckers often reach 4 - 6 metres tall before succumbing to blight, but they rarely manage to produce fruit.An excellent soil-enriching understorey in pine forests. Flowers are produced on wood of the current year's growth. Plants are fairly self-sterile. They hybridize freely with other members of this genus. Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus.
|Dry, gravelly or rocky, mostly acid soils. This species is extremely rare, due to chestnut blight.||sun or partial shade||well drained||poor||10 starts||A warm water infusion of the leaves has been used to calm the respiratory nerves and promote expectoration. The infusion has also been used in the treatment of whooping cough but modern opinion is that the leaves are no more than a mild astringent.
Edible seeds, raw or cooked. Rather on the small side, but these are the sweetest seeds of any species in this genus. The seed contains about 7% fat, 11% protein. It can be dried, ground into powder and then be added to cereals when making bread, cakes etc. A delicious oil can be extracted from the seed by crushing the nuts, boiling them in water and then skimming off the oil as it comes to the surface. It can be used as a topping for various puddings. The roasted nut can be used as a coffee substitute and a chocolate substitute can also be made from it.
The bark is a good source of tannin. The dried leaves contain 9% tannin. The wood and the seed husks also contain tannin. The husks contain 10 - 13% tannin.A brown dye is obtained from the bark. Wood - soft, not strong, light, very durable, liable to warp. It weighs 28lb per cubic foot. Easy to split, it is used for making cheap furniture, fence posts, in construction etc.
|Fat, Protein||Astringent, Dye, Expectorant, Food, Fuel, Oil, Tannin, Wood|
|264||Clover, Crimson||Fabaceae||Trifolium incarnatum (dg fo pf wp)||Pre-soak the seed for 12 hours in warm water and then sow in spring to early summer in situ. The seed can also be sown in early autumn as a winter green manure.
Succeeds in a moist, well-drained circum-neutral soil in full sun. Succeeds in poor soils. It grows well in an apple orchard, the trees will produce tastier fruit that stores better.
It should not be grown with camellias or gooseberries because it harbours a mite that can cause fruit drop in the gooseberries and premature budding in the camellias.
Fairly resistant to 'clover rot'.
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.
Buttercups growing nearby depress the growth of the nitrogen bacteria by means of a root exudate.When removing plant remains at the end of the growing season, it is best to only remove the aerial parts of the plant, leaving the roots in the ground to decay and release their nitrogen.
|full sun||moist||poor||8800 grams||The seeds can be sprouted and eaten in salads. They can also be dried and ground into a nutritious flour. Dried flower heads are a tea substitute. Used as a green manure. It is relatively fast growing, makes an excellent weed suppressing cover and fixes nitrogen. It is also used with grass seed mixes in soil reclamation projects.||Nitrogen||Beverage, Green manure, Soil stabilization|
|293||Clover, white||Fabaceae||Trifolium reptans (dg fo pf wp)||Seeds: Pre-soak for 12 hours in warm water and then sow in spring in situ. If the seed is in short supply it might be better to sow it in pots in a cold frame. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in late spring.
Division: in spring.
Succeeds in a moist, well-drained circum-neutral soil in full sun, preferring a sweet calcareous clay soil.
Succeeds in poor soils.
Dislikes growing with henbane or members of the buttercup family. Buttercups growing nearby depress the growth of the nitrogen bacteria by means of a root exudate.
It grows well in an apple orchard, the trees will produce tastier fruit that stores better.
It should not be grown with camellias or gooseberries because it harbours a mite that can cause fruit drop in the gooseberries and premature budding in the camellias.
Polymorphic, there are many subspecies and varieties. Some varieties have also been selected for use in lawn mixes.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.
|Grassland and lawns, preferring a calcareous clay soil[9, 17].||full sun||well drained||clay||3500 grams||A very important food plant for the caterpillars of many butterfly and moth species it is also a good bee plant. A good companion plant in the lawn, tolerating trampling[18, 54].||Nitrogen||Antirheumatic, Antiscrophulatic, Beverage, Depurative, Detergent, Food, Green manure, Ophthalmic, Tonic|
|32||Goat's Rue||Fabaceae||Galega officinalis (dg fo pf wp)||2012-04-05 00:00:00||51 each seeds in 8cc blocks||plant||Scarify seed by rubbing on sandpaper. Pre-soak for 12 hours in warm water and then sow the seed in spring or autumn in a cold frame. Spring-sown seed can be slow to germinate, a period of cold stratification may improve the germination time. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out into their permanent positions in the summer. If you have sufficient seed, then it is possible to sow outdoors in situ in mid to late spring. DIVISION in spring or autumn. 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 spring.||Plant prefers poor garden soil and full sun. Difficult to get this herb these days, and international trade and some domestic trade in this species has been disallowed due to the misconception that it is an invasive weed. I've found that it disappears without care. Succeeds in most soils but repays generous treatment. Prefers full sun and a deep moist soil but it also succeeds in light shade. Grows well even in poor soils. Plants are very tolerant of neglect and can be grown in quite coarse grass, which can be cut annually in the autumn. A long-lived plant, it can be invasive in good growing conditions.||partial shade||moist||poor||50 each||This is the most active of all galactagogue herbs. Promotes milk flow more reliably than anything I know (except childbirth). Works equally well for lactating human mothers and also domestic stock such as goats, horses and cows.
Goat's rue was once important in the treatment of plague, fevers and infectious diseases. It is still used in modern herbalism, though mainly for its effect in promoting milk-flow in lactating mothers (it has been shown to increase the flow of milk in cows and goats by 35 - 50%) and for its positive effect on the digestive system.
The plant contains galegine, an alkaloid that strongly reduces blood sugar levels which make it useful in the treatment of diabetes. The leaves and flowering tops are diaphoretic, diuretic, galactogogue and hypoglycaemic.
It has also been used in the treatment of fevers. It is taken internally to treat insufficient lactation, late-onset diabetes, pancreatitis and digestive problems, especially chronic constipation caused by a lack of digestive enzymes. The plant is harvested as it is just coming into flower and is dried for later use.
A fast-growing plant, it makes a good green manure crop, enriching the soil with organic matter and also fixing atmospheric nitrogen. The plant is used cosmetically in hand and foot bathes.Leaves cooked and eaten like spinach.
|Nitrogen||Cosmetic, Curdling agent, Diaphoretic, Diuretic, Food, Forage, Galactogogue, Green manure, Hypoglycaemic|
|266||Goji; Wolfberry; Chinese Matrimony Vine; Box Thorn||Solanaceae||Lycium barbarum (dg fo pf wp)||2012-03-31 00:00:00||240 each seeds in 8cc blocks||plant||7||Plant prefers full sun and fast-drying soils. High desert conditions are quite conducive. Goji plants are drought-tolerant.
Seeds lose viability when removed from fruit. Soak dried berries in water overnight and remove the seeds from the softened fruits in the morning and plant them. Use a sandy potting soil medium. Sow the seeds just beneath the surface, tamp in, and keep in strong light. Water well to start, but back off on watering after germination, which occurrs in 1 to 2 weeks. Pot up seedlings and plant out to the landscape only after they are well-established.
Grow in greenhouse for their first winter. Plant out in late spring or early summer. Pinch out the shoot tips of the young plants in order to encourage bushy growth.
Cuttings: half-ripe wood, 5 - 10cm with a heel if possible, July/August in individual pots in a frame. Good percentage. Cuttings of mature wood of the current season's growth, autumn to late winter in a cold frame. High percentage.
Division of suckers in late winter. Very easy, the suckers can be planted out direct into their permanent positions.
An easily grown plant, it does not require a rich soil, flowering and fruiting better in a well-drained soil of moderate quality. Succeeds in impoverished soils, but more fertile soils are best if the plant is being grown for its edible young shoots.
Requires a sunny position. Tolerates maritime exposure. There are some named varieties, selected for their ornamental value.Plants are very tolerant of pruning and can regrow from old wood. Any trimming is best carried out in the spring. Plants produce suckers freely and can become invasive when in a suitable position. Otherwise they can be difficult to establish.
|730||Native to Northern China. Viney, likes something to grow on. Will spread on ground.||sun or partial shade||well drained||poor||300 each||Goji berries are used fresh, juiced or (more commonly) dried and used like raisins.
They are a yin tonic, immune enhancing, and excellent for the overall health.
There is much confusion over the naming of this species. Most, if not all, of the plants being grown as L. chinense or L. europaeum are in fact this species.
Fruit: edible raw or cooked. The fruit is a berry about 2cm in diameter. A mild sweet liquorice flavour. Only the fully ripe fruits should be eaten.
Young shoots: edible cooked. Used mainly as a flavouring, they can also be lightly cooked for 3 - 4 minutes and used as a vegetable, the flavour is somewhat cress-like but has also been described as peppermint-like.
Leaves: wilt rapidly once they have been harvested; used as a tea substitute.
A sweet tonic decoction made from the fruits is used to lower blood pressure and blood cholesterol levels. It acts mainly on the liver and kidneys. The fruit is taken internally in the treatment of high blood pressure, diabetes, poor eyesight, vertigo, lumbago, impotence and menopausal complaints.
The fruit is harvested when fully ripe and is dried for later use.
The root bark is a bitter, cooling, antibacterial herb that controls coughs and lowers fevers, blood pressure and blood cholesterol levels. It is taken internally in the treatment of chronic fevers, internal haemorrhages, nosebleeds, tuberculosis, coughs, asthma etc. It is applied externally to treat genital itching. The bark is harvested in the winter and dried for later use.
The plant has a long history of medicinal use, both as a general, energy restoring tonic and also to cure a wide range of ailments from skin rashes and eyesight problems to diabetes. A tonic tea is made from the leaves.The fruit of many members of this genus is a very rich source of vitamins and minerals, especially in vitamins A, C and E, flavanoids and other bio-active compounds. It is also a fairly good source of essential fatty acids, which is fairly unusual for a fruit. It is being investigated as a food that is capable of reducing the incidence of cancer and also as a means of halting or reversing the growth of cancers.
|Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin E||Antibacterial, Anticholesterolemic, Antipyretic, Beverage, Cancer, Diuretic, Food, Hedge, Hypoglycaemic, Ophthalmic, Purgative, Skin, Soil stabilization, Tonic, Vasodilator|
|82||Pumpkin, Styrian Hull-less||Cucurbitaceae||Cucurbita pepo (dg fo pf wp)||2013-06-01 00:00:00||18 each starts in outdoor soil||transplant||Prepare the hill or the bed with plenty of aged manure or compost, direct-seed the seeds, and choose the three best seedlings from the hill (or if row cropping, thin to 1 plant every 3 feet). Keep weeded and watered. Vines will soon become self-mulching.||90||full sun||rich||30 each||This is a unique pumpkin cultivar developed in the provice of Styria in Austria.
We have been thinking about the challenge of finding ways that people can grow protein-rich foods in temperated gardens with high yield for the effort and without the need for a lot of processing. Our search lead us eventually to the naked seeded pumpkin (so-called hull-less or Styrian pumpkins). These pumpkins have a seed that is encased only in a thin membrane, which may be consumed along with the seed. The seeds can be lightly toasted with a little salt or eaten raw and uncooked.
This is a convenient protein source, a good snack or addition to smoothies or salads, rich in unsaturated fat, an immune tonic and tonic to the reproductive organs of both females and males. Consumption of the seed is a specific for treating benign prostatic hypertrophy (BPH) as well as prostate cancer.
These pumpkins are all about the seeds -- the flesh itself is low sugar and not particularly tasty. They make good goat food. So back to being after the seeds, which are a great protein source, we obtained some nice open-pollinated seed of this plant and grew a large patch of it this year. The plant turned out to be problem-free, fast-growing and a rewardingly prolific producer of the large fruits.Harvest and processing: Harvest pumpkins after first frost, split open and scoop out seeds and spaghetti onto a table screen. Using your hands and a garden hose, work the mash and water it down until the seeds are free of spaghetti. Scoop up the seeds and air dry them on screens, stirring several times per day, until the seeds are dry and stable. Store in paper bags.
|Potassium||Anthelmintic, Food, Forage, Immunostimulant, Oil, Veterinary|
|265||Rye, Fall||Poaceae||Secale cereale (dg fo pf wp)||Seed: sow March or October in situ and only just cover the seed. Germination should take place within 2 weeks.
An easily grown plant, it succeeds in most soils but prefers a well-drained light soil in a sunny position.
It thrives on infertile, submarginal areas and is renouned for its ability to grow on sandy soils.
Established plants are drought tolerant. The plant is reported to tolerate an annual precipitation in the range of of 22 to 176cm, an annual temperature in the range of of 4.3 to 21.3°C and a pH of 4.5 to 8.2.
Rye is a widely cultivated temperate zone cereal crop. It is able to withstand severe climatic conditions and can be grown much further north and at higher altitudes than wheat.
Average yields vary widely from country to country, the world average is around 1.6 tonnes per hectare with yields of almost 7 tonnes per hectare achieved in Norway.
There are many named varieties. Rye is a rather variable species and botanists have divided it into a number of sub-species, all of which could be of value in breeding programmes. These sub-species are briefly listed below:
S. cereale afghanicum (Vavilov.) K.Hammer. Native to the Caucasus, western Asia and India.
S. cereale ancestrale Zhuk. Native to western Asia.
S. cereale dighoricum Vavilov. Native to the Caucasus and eastern europe.
S. cereale segetale Zhuk. Native to temperate Asia.Rye grows well with cornflowers and pansies, though it inhibits the growth of poppies and couch grass.
|full sun||well drained||poor||25000 grams||Edible seed: cooked. A common cereal, it is used especially in N. Europe to make bread. The seed contains about 13% protein. The grain also contains some gluten, though not as much as wheat, so it makes a heavier bread than wheat. It can also be used to make cakes etc. The seed can be sprouted and added to salads.
Malt, a sweet substance produced by germinating the seed, is extracted from the roasted germinated seed and used as a sweetening agent and in making beer etc. The roasted (ungerminated) seed is used as a coffee substitute.
The straw is used as a fuel or as a biomass in industry. It is quite strong and can also be used in thatching, for paper making, weaving mats and hats etc. Other uses for the straw include as a packing material for nursery stock, bricks and tiles, for bedding, archery targets, and mushroom compost.The plant is a good green manure crop. It is fast growing with an extensive and deep root system. It is especially useful if sown in late autumn. Its growth over the winter will prevent soil erosion and the leaching of nutrients from the soil, it can then be incorporated into the soil in the spring. The extensive root system also makes this a good plant to use for soil stabilization, especially on sandy soils.
|Carbohydrate, Phosphorous, Potassium, Protein||Beverage, Cancer, Fibre, Fuel, Green manure, Laxative, Oil, Poultice, Soil stabilization, Sweetening|
|322||Spearmint||Lamiaceae||Mentha spicata (dg fo pf wp)||2013-06-24 00:00:00||56 each starts in greenhouse soil||transplant||Seed - sow spring in a cold frame. Germination is usually fairly quick. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and plant them out in the summer. Mentha species are very prone to hybridisation and so the seed cannot be relied on to breed true. Even without hybridisation, seedlings will not be uniform and so the content of medicinal oils etc will vary. When growing plants with a particular aroma it is best to propagate them by division[K]. Division can be easily carried out at almost any time of the year, though it is probably best done in the spring or autumn to allow the plant to establish more quickly. Virtually any part of the root is capable of growing into a new plant. Larger divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions. However, for maximum increase it is possible to divide the roots up into sections no more than 3cm long and pot these up in light shade in a cold frame. They will quickly become established and can be planted out in the summer.||Woodland garden sunny edge; dappled shade; shady edge; cultivated beds||partial shade||moist||clay||Antiemetic, Antiseptic, Cancer, Carminative, Diuretic, Essential, Insect Repellant, Poultice, Restorative, Stimulant, Stomachic, Strewing|
|69||Sumac, Smooth; Sumach Tree||Anacardiaceae||Rhus glabra (dg fo pf wp)||Scarify and sow in spring.||Plant prefers part shade to full sun and will flourish in any soil, including clay.||sun or partial shade||Small deciduous tree to 15 feet, with a flattened, spreading crown. All zones. Throughout North America, the several species of Sumac decorate field, roadside and yard with their deep-red, fall colors and erect, cone-like clusters of fruit. The fruit is covered with fuzz, rich in malic and ascorbic acid crystals, very high in vitamin C. You can make tasty sun tea from these fruits.||Alterative, Antiseptic, Appetizer, Astringent, Beverage, Diuretic, Dye, Emetic, Emmenagogue, Febrifuge, Galactogogue, Haemostatic, Hedge, Mordant, Oil, Ophthalmic, Pioneer, Refrigerant, Rubefacient, Salve, Shelterbelt, Soil stabilization, Tannin, TB, Tonic, Wood|
|70||Sunflower, Hopi Black Dye; Black Oil Sunflower||Asteraceae||Helianthus annuus (dg fo pf wp)||Horizon Herbs recommends direct-seeding in the spring. Plant a bit close at first, protect from crows, and eat the sprouts. Thin to 2 feet apart.||90||full sun||30 each||90-100 days to maturity. Generally single-headed although occasionally poly-headed, the plants are sturdy of stem and consistently dark black of seed. The ray flowers are golden yellow.
The seeds are used by Native Americans for dyeing wool and basketry. Imparts a color-fast light purple. Heirloom variety from Hopi Land, an oil, food, and dye plant that has its roots in ancient prehistory. One of the first domesticated plants, archaeological evidence points to the middle archaic period for the first human harboring of sunflower. The black seeded sunflowers are generally considered to be best for oil, while the striped sunflowers are considered to be best for direct consumption. However, I do admit that I ate the germ test! The seeds are very rich in oil. Native americans ground the seeds and boiled, then skimmed the oil. In native culture, vegetable oil is considered one of the most precious of substances. Also, the seeds are very good for eating, and the sprouts are potently delicious and healing to digestive woes.Please plant Hopi black dye sunflowers -- this heirloom variety is endangered by all the new polyhead sunflowers that are being developed for selling as pretty flowers in farmer's markets. This one is just as pretty, and it is much more useful.
|Fat, Protein||Phosphorous||Dye, Food, Forage, Insectiary, Oil, Ornamental|
|246||Sunflowers, unknown variety||Asteraceae||Helianthus annuus (dg fo pf wp)||Start seeds indoors mid-March or outdoors mid-April to mid-May. Plant 3 cm deep, 15 cm apart.||Cultivated Beds;||sun or partial shade||moist||0 each||Fat, Phosphorous, Protein||Food, Insectiary, Oil, Ornamental|
|72||Tea Tree, Australian||Myricaceae||Melaleuca alternifolia (dg fo pf wp)||2013-04-26 00:00:00||79 each seeds in 8cc blocks||plant||Sow in spring or summer. Sprinkle tiny seed on top of very light potting soil and tamp in, then keep evenly moist until germination. Greenhouse temperatures are preferred. These are always amazing when they emerge, that something so large can come from something so small -- its a miracle, really.
Seed: surface sow in spring or autumn onto a pot of permanently moist soil in a warm greenhouse. Emmerse in 5cm of water and do not water from overhead. Grow on until the seedlings are 0.5cm tall then remove from the water and pot up a week later. Seedlings are liable to damp off when grown this way, sowing the seed thinly, good ventilation and hygiene are essential for success. Grow the plants on for at least their first winter in a greenhouse and then plant them out in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Consider giving the plants some protection from the cold for their first few winters outdoors.
Cuttings of half-ripe lateral shoots with a heel, July/August in a frame.
Requires a fertile, well-drained moisture retentive lime-free soil in full sun. Prefers a soil that does not contain much nitrogen. Plants are shade tolerant and succeed in most soils and aspects except dry conditions when they are grown in Australian gardens.
This species is not very cold hardy; will require protection during cold snaps. It tolerates temperatures down to at least -7°c in Australian gardens but may not do as well with cooler summers and longer colder and wetter winters.
Seed takes about 12 months to develop on the plant, the woody seed capsules persist for 3 or more years. Any pruning is best done after the plants have flowered with the intention of maintaining a compact habit.Hybridizes freely with other members of this genus. Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus.
|Nice in a pot tree for indoor use -- slow-growing, pleasant. Prefers full sun and ever moist, even swampy soil.||sun or partial shade||well drained||clay||100 each||Native to Australia. Spongy-white trunk, gently aromatic foliage and flowers like white gossamer.
Plantation grade -- source of the popular germacidal essential oil.
Internally, it is used in the treatment of chronic and some acute infections, notably cystitis, glandular fever and chronic fatigue syndrome.
It is used externally in the treatment of thrush, vaginal infections, acne, athlete's foot, verrucae, warts, insect bites, cold sores and nits. It is applied neat to verrucae, warts and nits, but is diluted with a carrier oil such as almond for other uses. The oil is non-irritant. High quality oils contain about 40% terpinen-4-ol, which is well tolerated by the skin and 5% cineol which is irritant. However, in poor quality oils the levels of cineol can exceed 10% and in some cases up to 65%. The essential oil is used in aromatherapy.
An essential oil is obtained from the leaves. It is strongly germicidal and is also used in dentistry, deodorants, soaps, mouthwashes etc.Wood is very durable in wet conditions and in damp ground.
|Alterative, Antibacterial, Antifungal, Antiseptic, Aromatherapy, Diaphoretic, Essential, Expectorant, Wood|
|74||Uva Ursi; Bearberry; Kinnikinik||Ericaceae||Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (dg fo pf wp)||60||Scarify seed vigorously on sandpaper. Fire dependent germinator. Sow in fall, spring, or summer. Space plants 1 foot apart.
Seed: best sown in a greenhouse as soon as it is ripe. Pre-soak dried seed in boiling water for 10 - 20 seconds or burn some straw on top of them and then stratify at 2 - 5°c for 2 months. The seed usually germinates in 2 - 3 months at 15°c. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a cold frame or greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant out in late spring or early summer.
Cuttings of side shoots of the current season's growth, 5 - 8cm with a heel, August to December in a frame. The cuttings are very slow and can take a year to root.
Division in early spring. Take care because the plant resents root disturbance. Pot the divisions up and keep them in a lightly shaded position in a cold frame or greenhouse until they are growing away actively.
Layering of long branches in early spring.
Requires a deep moist well-drained light or medium lime-free loam in sun or semi-shade. Shade tolerant but plants produce less fruit when they are grown in the shade. Prefers a cool damp position.
A very ornamental plant, it is sometimes cultivated for its medicinal uses.
There are a number of named varieties developed for their ornamental interest. The form 'Massachusetts' is an especially prostrate, free-flowering and free-fruiting form. 'Anchor Bay', 'Point Reyes' and 'Vulcan's Peak' have all been mentioned as good groundcover forms.This is one of the first plants to colonize bare and rocky ground and burnt over areas. It is often an indicator of poor soils in the wild. Plants resent root disturbance and should be placed in their final positions as soon as possible. Hybridizes with other members of this genus, especially A. columbiana.
|Plant prefers acid soils, full sun to part shade.||partial shade||moist||loam||30 each||Hardy to: All zones. Spreading perennial evergreen groundcover. Circumpolar. The herb covers entire hillsides and has been adopted by landscapers for use in the city as a drought tolerant, glossy leaved groundcover. Does well in pots.
Smokeable. Tea or tincture treats mild urinary infections.
Bearberry was commonly used by many native North American Indian tribes to treat a wide range of complaints and has also been used in conventional herbal medicine for hundreds of years, it is one of the best natural urinary antiseptics. The leaves contain hydroquinones and are strongly antibacterial, especially against certain organisms associated with urinary infections. The plant should be used with caution, however, because hydroquinones are also toxic.
The dried leaves are used in the treatment of a variety of complaints. These leaves should be harvested in early autumn, only green leaves being selected, and then dried in gentle heat.
A tea made from the dried leaves is much used for kidney and bladder complaints and inflammations of the urinary tract such as acute and chronic cystitis and urethritis, but it should be used with caution and preferably only under the supervision of a qualified practitioner. The tea is more effective if the urine is alkaline, thus it is best used in combination with a vegetable-based diet.
Externally, a poultice of the infused leaves with oil has been used as a salve to treat rashes, skin sores etc, and as a wash for a baby's head. An infusion of the leaves has been used as an eyewash, a mouthwash for cankers and sore gums and as a poultice for back pains, rheumatism, burns etc.
The dried leaves have been used for smoking as an alternative to tobacco.
The herb should not be prescribed to children, pregnant women or patients with kidney disease. Other uses: fluid retention and bed wetting. Claimed to strengthen the heart muscle and urinary tract and to return the womb to its normal size after childbirth. Treatment should be short (seven days) and used with an alkaline diet. Not recommended for children under 12.
Edible fruit, raw or cooked. Insipid, dry and mealy, it becomes sweeter when cooked. Added to stews etc, it is a good source of carbohydrates.
The fruit can also be used to make a cooling drink or used for preserves etc. It can be dried and stored for later use. The fruit is about 6mm in diameter. A tea is made from the dried leaves.
A yellowish-brown dye is obtained from the leaves, it does not require a mordant. A grey-brown dye is obtained from the fruit.
The dried fruits are used in rattles and as beads on necklaces etc.The leaves are a good source of tannin. The mashed berries can be rubbed on the insides of coiled cedar root baskets in order to waterproof them. A good ground-cover for steep sandy banks in a sunny position or in light shade. A carpeting plant, growing fairly fast and carpeting as it spreads. It is valuable for checking soil erosion on watersheds. This is also a pioneer plant in the wild, often being the first plant to colonize burnt-over areas, especially on poor soils.
|Antiseptic, Astringent, Beads, Beverage, Diuretic, Dye, Hypnotic, Kidney, Lithontripic, Ornamental, Pioneer, Poultice, Skin, Soil stabilization, Tannin, Tonic, Waterproofing|
|75||Valerian||Valerianaceae||Valeriana officinalis (dg fo pf wp)||10||Seed is short-lived and should be sown within a year of receipt. Light dependent germinator. Sow in spring, tamped securely into surface, and keep evenly moist until germination, which occurs in 10 to 16 days. Seedling leaves look very un-valerian at first and some folks are confused. But have faith, in time the leaves will become divided and much more closely resemble the standard form of the plant. Space plants 1 to 2 feet apart.
Seed: sow spring in a cold frame and only just cover the seed because it requires light for germination. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and plant out into their permanent positions in the summer if sufficient growth has been made. If the plants are too small to plant out, grow them on in the greenhouse or frame for their first winter and plant them out early in the following summer.
Division: in spring. Larger divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions. We have found that it is best to pot up smaller divisions and grow them on in light shade in a greenhouse or cold frame until they are growing away well. Plant them out in the summer or the following spring.
A polymorphic species, the more extreme variations are given specific status by some botanists. Valerian is often grown in the herb garden and also sometimes grown commercially as a medicinal herb.
When grown for its medicinal root, the plant should not be allowed to flower. The flowers and the dried roots have a strong smell somewhat resembling stale perspiration. Cats are very fond of this plant, particularly the powdered root. Once a cat has discovered a plant they will often destroy it by constantly rolling over it.The dried root also attracts rats and can be used as a bait in traps. A good companion for most plants.
|730||Valerian prefers full sun to part shade and moist but well-drained soils. I have seen excellent clumps form, during a wet spring, on the peak of a pile of ground pumice. However, regular garden soil amended with organic compost will do nicely. The plant adapts rather well to a wide range of conditions.||sun or partial shade||moist||clay||0 each||Herbaceous perennial. Native to Europe and temperate Asia.
One of the best phosphorous accumulators.
Probably the strongest herbal cerebral sedative, the plant makes one go to sleep. All parts of the plant are active, but it is the spreading root and root crown, dug and used fresh, that is most commonly used, and the tincture of the fresh root is the most common dosage form. However, I have gone to sleep after eating a salad that an unwitting apprentice had prepared using valerian leaves as an ingredient, and I've had multiple correspondences from folks that make tinctures out of the fresh flowers. Regardless of how you make the potion, it is well-known that Valerian does not work on everybody. Some folks are stimulated by it. However, most of us go to sleep under her influence.
Flowers white in the second year to a height of 5 feet or more. Some companies are slinging varieties of Valerian that they claim are medicinally superior to the standard European strain (which is what we grow). However, the standard strain is plenty good enough to do the job.
Valerian is a well-known and frequently used medicinal herb that has a long and proven history of efficacy. It is noted especially for its effect as a tranquilliser and nervine, particularly for those people suffering from nervous overstrain. Valerian has been shown to encourage sleep, improve sleep quality and reduce blood pressure. It is also used internally in the treatment of painful menstruation, cramps, hypertension, irritable bowel syndrome etc.
It should not be prescribed for patients with liver problems.
Externally, it is used to treat eczema, ulcers and minor injuries.
The active ingredients are called valepotriates, research has confirmed that these have a calming effect on agitated people, but are also a stimulant in cases of fatigue.
The roots of 2 year old plants are harvested in the autumn once the leaves have died down and are used fresh or dried. The fresh root is about 3 times as effective as roots dried at 40°, whilst temperatures above 82° destroy the active principle in the root.
Use with caution, can lead to addiction.
The plant yields about 1% of an essential oil from the roots.
Seed is edible. An essential oil from the leaves and root is used as a flavouring in ice cream, baked goods, condiments etc. It is especially important in apple flavours. The leaves can also be used as a condiment. The plant is used in moderation as a herbal tea.
It is used in perfumery to provide a 'mossy' aroma, though the scent is considered to be disagreeable by many people. The dried roots are also placed in linen cupboards and clothes drawers in order to scent the clothes.
The dried root attracts rats and cats, it can be used as a bait to lure them away from other areas.An ingredient of 'QR' herbal compost activator. This is a dried and powdered mixture of several herbs that can be added to a compost heap in order to speed up bacterial activity and thus shorten the time needed to make the compost. The plant can also be used to make a very good liquid plant feed. It attracts earthworms. The leaves are very rich in phosphorus.
|Phosphorous||Antispasmodic, Beverage, Carminative, Compost, Diuretic, Essential, Flavouring, Fragrance, Hypnotic, Insectiary, Nervine, Sedative, Stimulant|
|258||Wild Hollyhock||Malvaceae||Alcea rosea (dg fo pf wp)||14||Seed: sow April/May or August/September in pots or in situ. Easily grown from seed, which usually germinates in about 2 - 3 weeks at 20°c. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in the summer.
Division after flowering. Only use rust-free specimens.
Root cuttings in December.
Basal cuttings at almost any time of year.
Succeeds in most soils. Poor soils should be enriched with organic matter. Prefers a heavy rich soil and a sheltered sunny position. Plants are hardy to about -15°c.A very ornamental plant, it is usually grown as a biennial due to its susceptibility to the fungal disease 'rust'. There are many named varieties. Young plants, and also the young growth in spring, are very attractive to slugs.
|sun or partial shade||moist||clay||0 each||The flowers are demulcent, diuretic and emollient. They are useful in the treatment of chest complaints, and a decoction is used to improve blood circulation, for the treatment of constipation, dysmenorrhoea, haemorrhage etc.
The flowers are harvested when they are open and are dried for later use. The shoots are used to ease a difficult labour. The root is astringent and demulcent. It is crushed and applied as a poultice to ulcers. Internally, it is used in the treatment of dysentery. The roots and the flowers are used in Tibetan medicine, where they are said to have a sweet, acrid taste and a neutral potency. They are used in the treatment of inflammations of the kidneys/womb, vaginal/seminal discharge, and the roots on their own are used to treat loss of appetite.
The seed is demulcent, diuretic and febrifuge.
Edible: young leaves, raw or cooked. A mild flavour, but the texture leaves something to be desired. They have been used as a pot-herb, though they are not particularly palatable. They can also be chopped up finely and added to salads.
Inner portion of young stems, raw. Flower petals and flower buds, raw. Added to salads.
A nutritious starch is obtained from the root.
A refreshing tea is made from the flower petals.
A fibre obtained from the stems is used in papermaking. The fibres are about 1.9mm long. The stems are harvested in late summer, the leaves are removed and the stems are steamed until the fibres can be removed. The fibres are cooked with lye for 2 hours and then ball milled for 3 hours or pounded with mallets. The paper is light tan in colour.
The flowers are an alternative ingredient of 'Quick Return' herbal compost activator. This is a dried and powdered mixture of several herbs that can be added to a compost heap in order to speed up bacterial activity and thus shorten the time needed to make the compost.
The seed contains 12% of a drying oil.
The red anthocyanin constituent of the flowers is used as a litmus.A brown dye is obtained from the petals.
|Antiinflammatory, Astringent, Beverage, Compost, Demulcent, Diuretic, Dye, Emollient, Febrifuge, Fibre, Litmus, Oil, Ornamental|
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