Colouring: edible dyes

View previous topic View next topic Go down

Colouring: edible dyes

Post by ThreeperMan on Sun 12 Jul 2009, 17:06

Alkanna tinctoria - (L.)Taush.
Alkanet
Author (L.)Taush. Botanical references 45, 200
Family Boraginaceae Genus Alkanna
Synonyms Alkanna tuberculata - (Forssk.)Meikle.
Anchusa tinctoria - (L.)L.
Known Hazards warning signMany members of this plant family contain a liver-damaging alkaloid and so internal usage is inadvisable[238].
Range S. Europe.
Habitat Maritime sands, uncultivated ground[45], calcareous soils[89] and pine forests[238].
Edibility Rating apple icon 1 (1-5) Medicinal Rating apple iconapple icon 2 (1-5)
Physical Characteristics
icon of man icon of perennial/biennial/annual Perennial growing to 0.2m by 0.25m.
It is hardy to zone 0. It is in flower in June. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) The plant prefers light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils, requires well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. The plant prefers neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It requires dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought. The plant can tolerate maritime exposure.
Habitats
Woodland Garden; Dappled Shade; Cultivated Beds;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Leaves.
Edible Uses: Colouring.
Used as a vegetable[177]. No further details are given. A red dye obtained from the roots is used as a food colouring[238].
Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Antibacterial; Antipruritic; Astringent; Vulnerary.
The root is antibacterial, antipruritic, astringent and vulnerary[238].It is used externally in the treatment of varicose veins, indolent ulcers, bed sores and itching rashes[238]. The root is harvested in the autumn and can be dried for later use[238].
Other Uses
Dye; Litmus.
A red dye is obtained from the roots[57, 89, 171], it is used by pharmacists as well as in perfumes and to stain wood or marble[100, 238]. The dye is also used in thermometers[100] and as a litmus to test for acids and alkalines[148]. It can make wood look like rosewood or mahogany[4, 148].
Cultivation details
Prefers a well-drained sandy or loamy soil[1] in sun or partial shade[238]. Dislikes acid soils[1] but thrives in alkaline soils[238]. A very drought tolerant plant when established[200], succeeding in a hot dry position[187], it is a useful plant for dry sandy or alkaline soils[238]. Plants are hardy to about -10°c[187]. This species is occasionally cultivated as a dye plant[61]. One report says that it is cultivated for its seed[46].
Propagation
Seed - sow spring in a cold frame. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in the summer. Division in spring. Fairly easy, they can be planted straight out into their permanent positions if required. Basal cuttings of new growth in late spring. Harvest the young shoots when they are about 10 - 15cm long and pot them up into individual pots in a lightly shaded position in a greenhouse. They should root well within a few weeks and can be planted out in the summer[K]. Root cuttings in late winter[200].
avatar
ThreeperMan
Admin

Posts : 537
Join date : 2009-07-12
Age : 68
Location : Galveston, TX

Back to top Go down

Amaranthus blitum - L. Slender Amaranth

Post by ThreeperMan on Sun 12 Jul 2009, 17:07

Amaranthus blitum - L.
Slender Amaranth
Author L. Botanical references 58, 200
Family Amaranthaceae Genus Amaranthus
Synonyms Amaranthus lividus - L.
Known Hazards warning signNo members of this genus are known to be poisonous, but when grown on nitrogen-rich soils they are known to concentrate nitrates in the leaves. This is especially noticeable on land where chemical fertilizers are used. Nitrates are implicated in stomach cancers, blue babies and some other health problems. It is inadvisable, therefore, to eat this plant if it is grown inorganically.
Range Temperate and Tropical zones.
Habitat A cosmopolitan weed growing on waste ground[58, 204].
Edibility Rating apple iconapple iconapple iconapple icon 4 (1-5) Medicinal Rating apple icon 1 (1-5)
Physical Characteristics
icon of man icon of perennial/biennial/annual Annual growing to 1m.
It is hardy to zone 5 and is frost tender. It is in leaf from April to October, in flower in August, and the seeds ripen in September. The flowers are monoecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but both sexes can be found on the same plant) and are pollinated by Wind. The plant is self-fertile. The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very acid soil. It cannot grow in the shade. It requires moist soil.
Habitats
Cultivated Beds;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Leaves; Seed.
Edible Uses: Colouring.
Leaves - raw or cooked as a spinach[2, 4, 55, 183]. The leaves contain about 3.88% protein, 1.1% fat, 9.38% carbohydrate, 3.2% ash, 323mg Ca, 8.3mg Fe, they are very rich in Vitamins A & C, rich in vitamin B1[179]. The leaves are used as a potherb in order to remove poison from the system[218]. Seed - cooked. Used as a cereal substitute in cakes, porridge etc[55, 183]. Very small, about 1.2mm in diameter[266], but it is easy to harvest and very nutritious. The seed can be cooked whole, and becomes very gelatinous like this, but it is rather difficult to crush all of the small seeds in the mouth and thus some of the seed will pass right through the digestive system without being assimilated[K]. An edible dye is obtained from the seed capsules[4].
Composition
Figures in grams (g) or miligrams (mg) per 100g of food.

Leaves (Fresh weight)

* 0 Calories per 100g
* Water: 0%
* Protein: 3.9g; Fat: 1.1g; Carbohydrate: 9.4g; Fibre: 0g; Ash: 3.2g;
* Minerals - Calcium: 323mg; Phosphorus: 0mg; Iron: 8.3mg; Magnesium: 0mg; Sodium: 0mg; Potassium: 0mg; Zinc: 0mg;
* Vitamins - A: 0mg; Thiamine (B1): 0mg; Riboflavin (B2): 0mg; Niacin: 0mg; B6: 0mg; C: 0mg;
* Reference: []
* Notes:

Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Astringent.
A fluid extract of the plant is used as an astringent internally in the treatment of ulcerated mouths and throats, externally as a wash for ulcers and sores[4]. The juice of the roots is used externally to relieve headaches[272]. The plant has a folk reputation for being effective in the treatment of tumours and warts[218].
Other Uses
Dye.
Yellow and green dyes can be obtained from the whole plant[168].
Cultivation details
Prefers a well-drained fertile soil in a sunny position[200]. Requires a hot sheltered position if it is to do well[K]. Tolerates a pH in the range 4.3 to 7.5. Plants should not be given inorganic fertilizers, see notes above on toxicity. This plant was cultivated by the ancient Romans and Greeks for its edible leaves, there are some named varieties[183]. Most if not all members of this genus photosynthesize by a more efficient method than most plants. Called the 'C4 carbon-fixation pathway', this process is particularly efficient at high temperatures, in bright sunlight and under dry conditions[196].
Propagation
Seed - sow late spring in situ. An earlier sowing can be made in a greenhouse and the plants put out after the last expected frosts. Germination is usually rapid and good if the soil is warm[133]. A drop in temperature overnight aids germination[133]. Cuttings of growing plants root easily[206].
avatar
ThreeperMan
Admin

Posts : 537
Join date : 2009-07-12
Age : 68
Location : Galveston, TX

Back to top Go down

Amaranthus caudatus - L. Love Lies Bleeding

Post by ThreeperMan on Sun 12 Jul 2009, 17:09

Amaranthus caudatus - L.
Love Lies Bleeding
Author L. Botanical references 200
Family Amaranthaceae Genus Amaranthus
Synonyms Amaranthus edulis - Speg.
Amaranthus leucocarpus - S.Watson.
Amaranthus mantegazzianus - Pass.
Known Hazards warning signNo members of this genus are known to be poisonous, but when grown on nitrogen-rich soils they are known to concentrate nitrates in the leaves. This is especially noticeable on land where chemical fertilizers are used. Nitrates are implicated in stomach cancers, blue babies and some other health problems. It is inadvisable, therefore, to eat this plant if it is grown inorganically.
Range Tropics.
Habitat A weed of cultivated ground[145].
Edibility Rating apple iconapple iconapple iconapple icon 4 (1-5) Medicinal Rating apple icon 1 (1-5)
Physical Characteristics
icon of man icon of perennial/biennial/annual Annual growing to 2m by 0.45m.
It is hardy to zone 5 and is frost tender. It is in flower from July to September, and the seeds ripen from August to September. The flowers are monoecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but both sexes can be found on the same plant) and are pollinated by Wind. The plant is self-fertile. The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils, requires well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very acid, very alkaline and saline soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It requires dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought.
Habitats
Cultivated Beds;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Leaves; Seed.
Edible Uses: Colouring.
Leaves - raw or cooked as a spinach or added to soups etc[22, 46, 61, 105, 183]. The mild flavoured leaves are rich in vitamins and minerals[183, K]. Seed - cooked[22, 46, 57, 105]. Very small but easy to harvest and very nutritious, individual plants can bear up to 100, 000 seeds[196]. It is eaten cooked or ground into a powder and used in baking[61, 183, 196]. The seed can also be popped in much the same way as popcorn[97, 183]. The seed can be cooked whole, and becomes very gelatinous like this, but it is rather difficult to crush all of the small seeds in the mouth and thus some of the seed will pass right through the digestive system without being assimilated[K]. The seed is very nutritious and contains 13 - 18% of a very high quality protein that is rich in the amino acid lysine[196]. It also contains good quantities of calcium, phosphorus, iron, potassium, zinc, vitamin E and the vitamin B complex[196]. A red food colouring called 'betalaina' is obtained from red cultivars[196].
Composition
Figures in grams (g) or miligrams (mg) per 100g of food.

Seed (Fresh weight)

* 0 Calories per 100g
* Water: 0%
* Protein: 18g; Fat: 0g; Carbohydrate: 0g; Fibre: 0g; Ash: 0g;
* Minerals - Calcium: 0mg; Phosphorus: 0mg; Iron: 0mg; Magnesium: 0mg; Sodium: 0mg; Potassium: 0mg; Zinc: 0mg;
* Vitamins - A: 0mg; Thiamine (B1): 0mg; Riboflavin (B2): 0mg; Niacin: 0mg; B6: 0mg; C: 0mg;
* Reference: []
* Notes:

Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Anthelmintic; Astringent.
The plant is astringent, anthelmintic and diuretic[4, 240]. It is used in the treatment of stranguary and is applied externally to scrofulous sores[240].
Other Uses
Dye.
Yellow and green dyes can be obtained from the whole plant[168].
Cultivation details
Prefers a well-drained fertile soil in a sunny position[196, 200]. Grows moderately well in poor soils[200]. Requires a hot sheltered position if it is to do well[K]. Plants are drought resistant though reasonable moisture levels are required for germination and also at pollination[196]. Some forms can tolerate a pH up to 8.5, there are also some that can tolerate mild salinity[196]. It is likely that they will also tolerate acid soils and aluminium toxicity[196]. Plants are not frost-hardy, the most cold tolerant cultivars can tolerate temperatures down to about 4°c[196]. Plants should not be given inorganic fertilizers, see notes above on toxicity. This species is cultivated for its edible seed and leaves in the Andes and various other parts of S. America[46, 61, 97]. It probably arose through cultivation from A. quitensis. There are some named varieties[196]. Plants take 4 - 6 months from sowing to harvesting the seed, but up to 10 months in some Andean highland regions[196]. Yields from 1 - 3 tonnes per hectare are common, 5 tonnes has been achieved and research sites have produced the equivalent of 6 tonnes per hectare[196]. The seed is usually harvested just before maturity otherwise some of the seed will be lost during harvesting[196]. Plants usually have downward facing seedheads but varieties have been developed with upward facing heads that can be harvested mechanically[196]. This species is sensitive to day-length most cultivars are short-day and have not done well in northern latitudes, but there are some varieties that flower at day-lengths up to 16 hours[196]. Most if not all members of this genus photosynthesize by a more efficient method than most plants. Called the 'C4 carbon-fixation pathway', this process is particularly efficient at high temperatures, in bright sunlight and under dry conditions[196].
Propagation
Seed - sow late spring in situ. An earlier sowing can be made in a greenhouse and the plants put out after the last expected frosts. Germination is usually rapid and good if the soil is warm[133]. A drop in temperature overnight aids germination[133]. Cuttings of growing plants root easily[206].
Links
References
[K] Ken Fern
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
[4] Grieve. A Modern Herbal. Penguin 1984 ISBN 0-14-046-440-9
Not so modern (1930's?) but lots of information, mainly temperate plants.
[22] Sholto-Douglas. J. Alternative Foods. 0
Not very comprehensive, it seems more or less like a copy of earlier writings with little added.
[46] Uphof. J. C. Th. Dictionary of Economic Plants. Weinheim 1959
An excellent and very comprehensive guide but it only gives very short descriptions of the uses without any details of how to utilize the plants. Not for the casual reader.
[57] Schery. R. W. Plants for Man. 0
Fairly readable but not very comprehensive. Deals with plants from around the world.
[61] Usher. G. A Dictionary of Plants Used by Man. Constable 1974 ISBN 0094579202
Forget the sexist title, this is one of the best books on the subject. Lists a very extensive range of useful plants from around the world with very brief details of the uses. Not for the casual reader.
[97] Towle. M. A. The Ethno-Botany of Pre-Columbian Peru. 0
A very interesting book covering quite a lot of information on plant uses in S. America although many of the plants are not suitable for temperate areas..
[105] Tanaka. T. Tanaka's Cyclopaedia of Edible Plants of the World. Keigaku Publishing 1976
The most comprehensive guide to edible plants I've come across. Only the briefest entry for each species, though, and some of the entries are more than a little dubious. Not for the casual reader.
[133] Rice. G. (Editor) Growing from Seed. Volume 1. Thompson and Morgan. 1987
Very readable magazine with lots of information on propagation.
[145] Singh. Dr. G. and Kachroo. Prof. Dr. P. Forest Flora of Srinagar. Bishen Singh Mahendra Pal Singh 1976
A good flora of the western Himalayas but poorly illustrated. Some information on plant uses.
[168] Grae. I. Nature's Colors - Dyes from Plants. MacMillan Publishing Co. New York. 1974 ISBN 0-02-544950-8
A very good and readable book on dyeing.
[183] Facciola. S. Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants. Kampong Publications 1990 ISBN 0-9628087-0-9
Excellent. Contains a very wide range of conventional and unconventional food plants (including tropical) and where they can be obtained (mainly N. American nurseries but also research institutes and a lot of other nurseries from around the world.
[196] Popenoe. H. et al Lost Crops of the Incas National Academy Press 1990 ISBN 0-309-04264-X
An excellent book. Very readable, with lots of information and good pictures of some lesser known food plants of S. America.
[200] Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992. MacMillan Press 1992 ISBN 0-333-47494-5
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
[206] Larkcom J. Oriental Vegetables John Murray 1991 ISBN 0-7195-4781-4
Well written and very informative.
[240] Chopra. R. N., Nayar. S. L. and Chopra. I. C. Glossary of Indian Medicinal Plants (Including the Supplement). Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, New Delhi. 1986
Very terse details of medicinal uses of plants with a wide range of references and details of research into the plants chemistry. Not for the casual reader.
avatar
ThreeperMan
Admin

Posts : 537
Join date : 2009-07-12
Age : 68
Location : Galveston, TX

Back to top Go down

Amaranthus cruentus - L. Purple Amaranth

Post by ThreeperMan on Sun 12 Jul 2009, 17:10

Amaranthus cruentus - L.
Purple Amaranth
Author L. Botanical references 200
Family Amaranthaceae Genus Amaranthus
Synonyms Amaranthus hybridus cruentus - (L.)Thell.
Amaranthus paniculatus - L.
Known Hazards warning signNo members of this genus are known to be poisonous, but when grown on nitrogen-rich soils they are known to concentrate nitrates in the leaves. This is especially noticeable on land where chemical fertilizers are used. Nitrates are implicated in stomach cancers, blue babies and some other health problems. It is inadvisable, therefore, to eat this plant if it is grown inorganically.
Range Original habitat is obscure, it was probably tropical America.
Habitat Not known in a truly wild situation.
Edibility Rating apple iconapple iconapple iconapple icon 4 (1-5) Medicinal Rating 0 (1-5)
Physical Characteristics
icon of man icon of perennial/biennial/annual Annual growing to 2m.
It is hardy to zone 0 and is frost tender. It is in flower from July to September, and the seeds ripen from August to September. The flowers are monoecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but both sexes can be found on the same plant) and are pollinated by Wind. The plant is self-fertile. The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very acid soil. It cannot grow in the shade. It requires moist soil.
Habitats
Cultivated Beds;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Leaves; Seed.
Edible Uses: Colouring.
Leaves - cooked as a spinach[183]. The mild-flavoured leaves are rich in vitamins and minerals[183]. Seed - very small but easy to harvest and very nutritious. They are eaten cooked or ground into a powder and used for making cakes etc[183, 257]. They can also be sprouted and used in salads[183]. The seed can be cooked whole, and becomes very gelatinous like this, but it is rather difficult to crush all of the small seeds in the mouth and thus some of the seed will pass right through the digestive system without being assimilated[K]. The flowers are used as a food colouring in ceremonial maize bread[183].
Composition
Figures in grams (g) or miligrams (mg) per 100g of food.

Seed (Fresh weight)

* 0 Calories per 100g
* Water: 0%
* Protein: 15g; Fat: 0g; Carbohydrate: 0g; Fibre: 0g; Ash: 0g;
* Minerals - Calcium: 0mg; Phosphorus: 0mg; Iron: 0mg; Magnesium: 0mg; Sodium: 0mg; Potassium: 0mg; Zinc: 0mg;
* Vitamins - A: 0mg; Thiamine (B1): 0mg; Riboflavin (B2): 0mg; Niacin: 0mg; B6: 0mg; C: 0mg;
* Reference: []
* Notes:

Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
None known
Other Uses
Dye.
Yellow and green dyes can be obtained from the whole plant[168].
Cultivation details
Prefers a well-drained fertile soil in a sunny position[200]. Requires a hot sheltered position if it is to do well[K]. Tolerates a pH in the range 4 to 7.5. Plants should not be given inorganic fertilizers, see notes above on toxicity. This species is cultivated for its edible seed in many parts of S. America and in Japan[58, 97, 183]. There is at least one named variety, 'Oeschberg' is a very productive plant, growing 1 metre tall and can yield up to 2.5 tonnes per hectare[183]. This species is the most adaptable of the grain amaranths, it also flowers under a wider range of daylength hours than the other species[183]. Most if not all members of this genus photosynthesize by a more efficient method than most plants. Called the 'C4 carbon-fixation pathway', this process is particularly efficient at high temperatures, in bright sunlight and under dry conditions[196].
Propagation
Seed - sow late spring in situ. An earlier sowing can be made in a greenhouse and the plants put out after the last expected frosts. Germination is usually rapid and good if the soil is warm[133]. A drop in temperature overnight aids germination[133]. Cuttings of growing plants root easily[206].
Cultivars

'1041'
A uniform, high-yielding green plant, with predominantly white seeds[183]. Growing to 1.8 metres tall, it is mostly single-stemmed when planted at recommended densities[183]. A medium-length growing season, plants are somewhat resistant to Lygus infestations[183]. This is the most commonly grown cultivar in N. America[183].
'Golden Giant'
The plant produces large orange-golden seedheads. The relatively large seeds are mixed light and dark gold[183]. Yields of up to 450 grammes per plant have been achieved[183]. An early, heavy bearing ornamental cultivar, maturing in 120 days from sowing the seed[183]. It grows to 2.4 metres tall and does not produce side branches[183]. The leaves are green with golden brown veins, the stalks and flower heads are also golden brown[183]. The seed is easily gathered and threshed, but the plants are somewhat prone to lodging[183].
'Oeschberg'
A very productive plant, growing 1 metre tall and capable of yields up to 2.5 tonnes per hectare[183].
'Popping'
The white seed can be popped in a frying pan or a wok at high temperatures - no oil is needed[183]. A high yielding plant with a red and tan seed head[183]. It breaks off easily in the wind[183]. The plant matures a crop within 110 days from sowing[183].
'R158'
The medium-size white seeds are high in the amino acid lysine[183]. They are used to make a flour, for popping or for sprouting[183]. A very early-maturing plant, capable of ripening a seed crop with 93 days from sowing, it has ornamental red leaves and stems[183]. A vigorous growing and high yielding plant, but it lodges easily[183]. Harvest, thresh and winnow the seed after the first frosts[183]. Plants are best grown 7 - 10cm apart in rows 60cm apart[183]
avatar
ThreeperMan
Admin

Posts : 537
Join date : 2009-07-12
Age : 68
Location : Galveston, TX

Back to top Go down

Amaranthus hypochondriacus - L. Prince's Feather

Post by ThreeperMan on Sun 12 Jul 2009, 17:11

Amaranthus hypochondriacus - L.
Prince's Feather
Author L. Botanical references 200, 266
Family Amaranthaceae Genus Amaranthus
Synonyms Amaranthus hybridus erythrostachys - Moq.
Amaranthus hybridus hypochondriachus - (L.)Thell.
Known Hazards warning signNo members of this genus are known to be poisonous, but when grown on nitrogen-rich soils they are known to concentrate nitrates in the leaves. This is especially noticeable on land where chemical fertilizers are used. Nitrates are implicated in stomach cancers, blue babies and some other health problems. It is inadvisable, therefore, to eat this plant if it is grown inorganically.
Range Southern N. America.
Habitat A weed of wasteland and agricultural land.
Edibility Rating apple iconapple iconapple iconapple icon 4 (1-5) Medicinal Rating apple iconapple iconapple icon 3 (1-5)
Physical Characteristics
icon of man icon of perennial/biennial/annual Annual growing to 1.2m by 0.5m.
It is hardy to zone 0 and is frost tender. It is in leaf from April to October, in flower from July to August, and the seeds ripen from August to September. The flowers are monoecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but both sexes can be found on the same plant) and are pollinated by Wind. The plant is self-fertile. The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It requires moist soil.
Habitats
Cultivated Beds;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Leaves; Seed.
Edible Uses: Colouring.
Young leaves - cooked as a spinach[183, 238]. Rich in vitamins and minerals, they have a mild flavour[K]. Seed - raw or cooked. They can be used as a cereal substitute. They can also be popped in much the same way as popcorn[183]. The seed can be soaked for 12 hours in warm water and then allowed to sprout for about 11 days[244]. They can then be added to salads[183]. Very small but the seed is easy to harvest and very nutritious. The seed can be cooked whole, and becomes very gelatinous like this, but it is rather difficult to crush all of the small seeds in the mouth and thus some of the seed will pass right through the digestive system without being assimilated[K]. A red pigment obtained from the plant is used as a food colouring[238].
Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Astringent.
The whole plant contains tannin and is astringent[238, 254]. It is used internally in the treatment of diarrhoea and excessive menstruation[238, 254]. It can be used as a gargle to soothe inflammation of the pharynx and to hasten the healing of ulcerated mouths[254], whilst it can also be applied externally to treat vaginal discharges, nosebleeds and wounds[238]. The plant can be used fresh or it can also be harvested when coming into flower and dried for later use[238].
Other Uses
Dye.
Yellow and green dyes can be obtained from the whole plant[168]. A red dye obtained from the plant (the report does not specify which part of the plant) is used as a colouring in foods and medicines[238].
Cultivation details
Prefers a well-drained fertile soil in a sunny position[200]. Requires a hot sheltered position if it is to do well[K]. Tolerates a pH in the range 5.2 to 7.5. Plants should not be given inorganic fertilizers, see notes above on toxicity. Often cultivated, especially in tropical areas, for its edible leaves and seeds, there are many named varieties[183]. This is the most robust and highest yielding of the grain amaranths, though it is late maturing and therefore less suitable for northern areas[183]. Most if not all members of this genus photosynthesize by a more efficient method than most plants. Called the 'C4 carbon-fixation pathway', this process is particularly efficient at high temperatures, in bright sunlight and under dry conditions[196].
Propagation
Seed - sow late spring in situ. An earlier sowing can be made in a greenhouse and the plants put out after the last expected frosts. Germination is usually rapid and good if the soil is warm[133]. A drop in temperature overnight aids germination[133]. Cuttings of growing plants root easily[206].
Cultivars

'Burgundy'
The seeds are small and creamy white/beige[183]. A widely adapted cultivar, able to mature a seed crop in 105 days from sowing[183]. It has yielded well on the Olympic Peninsula of Washington and on the windswept plains of N. Kansas[183]. The plant is heavy yielding and has striking purplish-red foliage, stalks and seedheads[183]. Plants grow 1.5 - 2.1 metres tall[183].
'Golden Grain'
The grain gives a delightful crunchy texture when added to bread recipes[183]. An early maturing strain with golden yellow to orange foliage and seedheads[183]. The uniform short plants are about 1.3 metres tall[183]. Easier for mechanical harvesting, but less productive than 'Burgundy'[183].
avatar
ThreeperMan
Admin

Posts : 537
Join date : 2009-07-12
Age : 68
Location : Galveston, TX

Back to top Go down

Amaranthus quitensis - Kunth. Ataco

Post by ThreeperMan on Sun 12 Jul 2009, 17:13

Amaranthus quitensis - Kunth.
Ataco
Author Kunth. Botanical references 50
Family Amaranthaceae Genus Amaranthus
Synonyms
Known Hazards warning signNo members of this genus are known to be poisonous, but when grown on nitrogen-rich soils they are known to concentrate nitrates in the leaves. This is especially noticeable on land where chemical fertilizers are used. Nitrates are implicated in stomach cancers, blue babies and some other health problems. It is inadvisable, therefore, to eat this plant if it is grown inorganically.
Range S. America - Andes. A rare casual in Europe.
Habitat An infrequent casual of waste ground in Britain, introduced with bird seed, soya-bean waste etc. It rarely, if ever, sets seed in Britain.
Edibility Rating apple iconapple icon 2 (1-5) Medicinal Rating 0 (1-5)
Physical Characteristics
icon of man icon of perennial/biennial/annual Annual growing to 1m.
It is hardy to zone 0 and is frost tender. The flowers are monoecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but both sexes can be found on the same plant) and are pollinated by Wind. The plant is self-fertile. The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It requires moist soil.
Habitats
Cultivated Beds;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Leaves; Seed.
Edible Uses: Colouring.
A red edible dye is obtained from the inflorescence, it is used in S. America for colouring ceremonial maize dishes[183]. Leaves - cooked[177]. Used as a potherb[183]. Seed - ground into a powder and used as a flour[177, 183]. The seed can be cooked whole, and becomes very gelatinous like this, but it is rather difficult to crush all of the small seeds in the mouth and thus some of the seed will pass right through the digestive system without being assimilated[K].
Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
None known
Other Uses
Dye.
Yellow and green dyes can be obtained from the whole plant[168].
Cultivation details
We have very little information on this species and do not know how well it will grow in Britain, but it will probably succeed as a spring-sown annual. It is occasionally cultivated in S. America, mainly for the edible dye obtained from its inflorescence[183]. The plant is also of interest as a probable ancestor of A. caudatus, which is cultivated as a grain crop in S. America. This species could be of value in any breeding programmes. The following notes are based on the general needs of the genus. Prefers a well-drained fertile soil in a sunny position[200]. Requires a hot sheltered position if it is to do well[K]. Plants should not be given inorganic fertilizers, see notes above on toxicity. Most if not all members of this genus photosynthesize by a more efficient method than most plants. Called the 'C4 carbon-fixation pathway', this process is particularly efficient at high temperatures, in bright sunlight and under dry conditions[196].
Propagation
Seed - sow late spring in situ. An earlier sowing can be made in a greenhouse and the plants put out after the last expected frosts. Germination is usually rapid and good if the soil is warm[133]. A drop in temperature overnight aids germination[133]. Cuttings of growing plants root easily[206].
Links
References
[K] Ken Fern
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
[50] ? Flora Europaea Cambridge University Press 1964
An immense work in 6 volumes (including the index). The standard reference flora for europe, it is very terse though and with very little extra information. Not for the casual reader.
[133] Rice. G. (Editor) Growing from Seed. Volume 1. Thompson and Morgan. 1987
Very readable magazine with lots of information on propagation.
[168] Grae. I. Nature's Colors - Dyes from Plants. MacMillan Publishing Co. New York. 1974 ISBN 0-02-544950-8
A very good and readable book on dyeing.
[177] Kunkel. G. Plants for Human Consumption. Koeltz Scientific Books 1984 ISBN 3874292169
An excellent book for the dedicated. A comprehensive listing of latin names with a brief list of edible parts.
[183] Facciola. S. Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants. Kampong Publications 1990 ISBN 0-9628087-0-9
Excellent. Contains a very wide range of conventional and unconventional food plants (including tropical) and where they can be obtained (mainly N. American nurseries but also research institutes and a lot of other nurseries from around the world.
[196] Popenoe. H. et al Lost Crops of the Incas National Academy Press 1990 ISBN 0-309-04264-X
An excellent book. Very readable, with lots of information and good pictures of some lesser known food plants of S. America.
[200] Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992. MacMillan Press 1992 ISBN 0-333-47494-5
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
[206] Larkcom J. Oriental Vegetables John Murray 1991 ISBN 0-7195-4781-4
Well written and very informative.
avatar
ThreeperMan
Admin

Posts : 537
Join date : 2009-07-12
Age : 68
Location : Galveston, TX

Back to top Go down

Anchusa officinalis - L. Alkanet

Post by ThreeperMan on Sun 12 Jul 2009, 17:15

Anchusa officinalis - L.
Alkanet
Author L. Botanical references 200
Family Boraginaceae Genus Anchusa
Synonyms
Known Hazards None known
Range Europe to W. Asia. An introduced casual in Britain[17].
Habitat Roadsides, pastures and waste ground, preferring warmer areas[9, 13].
Edibility Rating apple iconapple icon 2 (1-5) Medicinal Rating apple icon 1 (1-5)
Physical Characteristics
icon of man icon of perennial/biennial/annual Biennial/Perennial growing to 0.6m.
It is hardy to zone 5 and is not frost tender. It is in flower from June to October, and the seeds ripen from July to October. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees. It is noted for attracting wildlife. The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It requires moist soil.
Habitats
Cultivated Beds;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Flowers; Leaves.
Edible Uses: Colouring.
Leaves and young shoots - cooked[9, 115, 166]. Used like spinach[2, 183]. Flowers - cooked or used as a garnish[183]. The red dye obtained from the roots can be used to colour oils and fats[105].
Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Demulcent; Expectorant; Homeopathy.
All parts of the plant are demulcent and expectorant[9]. They are used externally to treat cuts, bruises and phlebitis and internally to treat coughs and bronchial catarrh[9]. A homeopathic remedy is made from the plant[9]. It is used in the treatment of stomach and duodenal ulcers[9].
Other Uses
Dye.
A red dye is obtained from the roots[13].
Scented Plants

Leaves: Dried
The dry leaves emit a rich musky fragrance, rather like wild strawberry leaves drying.

Cultivation details
Succeeds in most soils, preferring a sunny position[1]. Prefers a fertile well-drained soil[111]. The flowers are a rich source of nectar and are very attractive to bees[1]. The dry leaves emit a rich musky fragrance, rather like wild strawberry leaves drying.
Propagation
Seed - sow spring in pots of sandy soil[200]. An overnight drop in temperature helps germination[133]. The seed usually germinates in 1 - 4 weeks at 21°c[133]. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in the summer. The seed can also be sown in an outdoor seed bed during July, transplanting the plants to their final positions during early autumn[245]. These plants will grow larger and flower earlier than those sown in spring.
avatar
ThreeperMan
Admin

Posts : 537
Join date : 2009-07-12
Age : 68
Location : Galveston, TX

Back to top Go down

Artemisia indica - Willd.

Post by ThreeperMan on Sun 12 Jul 2009, 17:16

Artemisia indica - Willd.
Author Willd. Botanical references 58, 200
Family Compositae Genus Artemisia
Synonyms Artemisia asiatica - (Pampan.)Nakai.
Artemisia dubia - non Wall.
Artemisia dubia orientalis - Pampan.
Artemisia vulgaris indica - (Willd.)Maxim.
Known Hazards warning signAlthough no reports of toxicity have been seen for this species, skin contact with some members of this genus can cause dermatitis or other allergic reactions in some people[222].
Range E. Asia - China, Japan, India.
Habitat Waste ground in central and southern Japan[58]. The sides of paths and tracks, margins of cleared forests at elevations of 300 - 2500 metres in Nepal[272].
Edibility Rating apple icon 1 (1-5) Medicinal Rating apple iconapple iconapple icon 3 (1-5)
Physical Characteristics
icon of man icon of perennial/biennial/annual Annual/Perennial growing to 1.2m.
It is hardy to zone 7. It is in flower from August to October, and the seeds ripen from August to October. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects. The plant prefers light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It requires dry or moist soil.
Habitats
Cultivated Beds;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Leaves.
Edible Uses: Colouring; Condiment.
Young leaves - cooked and eaten with barley[183]. The leaves are also pounded with steamed glutinous rice to give a flavour and colouring[177, 183].
Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Anthelmintic; Antiseptic; Antispasmodic; Emmenagogue; Expectorant; Ophthalmic; Stomachic; Tonic.
The leaves and flowering stems are anthelmintic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, emmenagogue, expectorant and stomachic[240, 272]. An infusion is used in the treatment of nervous and spasmodic affections, in asthma and in diseases of the brain[240, 272]. This infusion is also considered to be helpful in improving the appetite[272]. The juice of the plant is used in Nepal to treat diarrhoea, dysentery and abdominal pains[272]. It is used as an eyewash where it is said to relieve the burning sensation in conjunctivitis[272]. A paste of the plant is applied externally to treat wounds[272]. The roots are antiseptic and are a tonic for the kidneys[240, 266, 272].
Other Uses
Essential; Incense; Insecticide.
The plant yields about 0.2% essential oil. This is a good larvicide and a feeble insecticide[240]. The dried leaves and flowers are used as an incense[272].
Scented Plants

Leaves: Crushed
The leaves are aromatic.

Cultivation details
Easily grown in a well-drained circumneutral or slightly alkaline loamy soil, preferring a sunny position[1, 200]. Plants are annuals or short-lived perennials[200]. Plants are longer lived, more hardy and more aromatic when they are grown in a poor dry soil[245]. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer[233].
Propagation
Seed - surface sow spring in a greenhouse. Do not allow the compost to dry out. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in early summer. The seed can also be sown in situ in late spring.
avatar
ThreeperMan
Admin

Posts : 537
Join date : 2009-07-12
Age : 68
Location : Galveston, TX

Back to top Go down

Artemisia princeps - Pampan.

Post by ThreeperMan on Sun 12 Jul 2009, 17:17

Artemisia princeps - Pampan.
Author Pampan. Botanical references 58, 266
Family Compositae Genus Artemisia
Synonyms Artemisia indica maximowiczii - (Nakai].Hara.
Known Hazards warning signAlthough no reports of toxicity have been seen for this species, skin contact with some members of this genus can cause dermatitis or other allergic reactions in some people[222].
Range E. Asia - China, Japan, Korea.
Habitat Waste ground and thickets in lowland and low elevations, central and southern Japan[58].
Edibility Rating apple iconapple icon 2 (1-5) Medicinal Rating apple icon 1 (1-5)
Physical Characteristics
icon of man icon of perennial/biennial/annual Perennial growing to 1.2m.
It is hardy to zone 0. It is in flower from July to November, and the seeds ripen from August to November. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Wind. The plant prefers light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It requires dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought.
Habitats
Cultivated Beds;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Leaves.
Edible Uses: Colouring; Condiment.
Leaves and young seedlings - raw or cooked[116, 177]. Used in salads and soups after the bitterness has been removed[183]. After being lightly boiled the young leaves are pounded into glutinous-rice dumplings (known as 'mochi'). They impart a delightful aroma, flavour and colour[183]. Mugwort mochi is often sold in N. American health food stores[183].
Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Bitter.
Bitter[116].
Other Uses
None known
Cultivation details
We have very little information on this species and do not know if it will be hardy in Britain, though judging by its native range it should succeed outdoors in many parts of this country. This species spreads rapidly by means of underground stolons and can become invasive[206]. The following notes are based on the general needs of the genus. Easily grown in a well-drained circumneutral or slightly alkaline loamy soil, preferring a warm sunny dry position. Established plants are drought tolerant[200]. Plants are longer lived, more hardy and more aromatic when they are grown in a poor dry soil[245]. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer[233].
Propagation
Seed - surface sow from late winter to early summer in a greenhouse, making sure that the compost does not dry out[200]. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for their first winter. Plant out in late spring or early summer. Division in spring or autumn. Basal cuttings in late spring. Harvest the young shoots when about10 - 15cm long, pot up in a lightly shaded position in a greenhouse or cold frame and plant them out when well rooted. Very easy.
avatar
ThreeperMan
Admin

Posts : 537
Join date : 2009-07-12
Age : 68
Location : Galveston, TX

Back to top Go down

Artemisia vulgaris - L. Mugwort

Post by ThreeperMan on Sun 12 Jul 2009, 17:21

Artemisia vulgaris - L.
Mugwort
Author L. Botanical references 17, 200
Family Compositae Genus Artemisia
Synonyms
Known Hazards warning signThe plant might be poisonous in large doses[21]. Skin contact can cause dermatitis in some people[222].
Range Throughout most temperate regions of the northern hemisphere, including Britain.
Habitat Common on hedgebanks and waysides, uncultivated and waste land[4, 7, 17].
Edibility Rating apple iconapple icon 2 (1-5) Medicinal Rating apple iconapple iconapple icon 3 (1-5)
Physical Characteristics
icon of man icon of perennial/biennial/annual Perennial growing to 1.2m by 0.7m.
It is hardy to zone 3 and is not frost tender. It is in flower from July to September. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Wind. The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very alkaline soil. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It requires dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought.
Habitats
Meadow; Hedgerow;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Leaves.
Edible Uses: Colouring; Condiment.
Leaves - raw or cooked[2, 9, 12, 27, 177]. Aromatic and somewhat bitter[244]. Their addition to the diet aids the digestion and so they are often used in small quantities as a flavouring, especially with fatty foods[183, 244]. They are also used to give colour and flavour to glutinous-rice dumplings (Mochi)[183, 244]. The young shoots are used in spring[46]. In Japan the young leaves are used as a potherb[183]. The dried leaves and flowering tops are steeped into tea[183]. They have also been used as a flavouring in beer, though fell into virtual disuse once hops came into favour[4].
Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Antiseptic; Antispasmodic; Appetizer; Carminative; Cholagogue; Diaphoretic; Digestive; Diuretic; Emmenagogue; Expectorant; Foot care; Haemostatic; Nervine; Purgative; Stimulant; Tonic; Women's complaints.
Mugwort has a long history of use in herbal medicine especially in matters connected to the digestive system, menstrual complaints and the treatment of worms[238]. It is slightly toxic, however, and should never be used by pregnant women, especially in their first trimester, since it can cause a miscarriage[7, 238]. Large, prolonged dosage can damage the nervous system[268]. All parts of the plant are anthelmintic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, carminative, cholagogue, diaphoretic, digestive, emmenagogue, expectorant, nervine, purgative, stimulant, slightly tonic and used in the treatment of women's complaints[4, 7, 13, 21, 147, 165, 178, 201]. The leaves are also said to be appetizer, diuretic, haemostatic and stomachic[176, 218, 222]. They can be used internally or externally[218]. An infusion of the leaves and flowering tops is used in the treatment of nervous and spasmodic affections, sterility, functional bleeding of the uterus, dysmenorrhoea, asthma and diseases of the brain[176, 243]. The leaves have an antibacterial action, inhibiting the growth of Staphylococcus aureus, Bacillus typhi, B. dysenteriae, streptococci, E. coli, B. subtilis, Pseudomonas etc[176]. The leaves are harvested in August and can be dried for later use[4]. The stem is also said to be antirheumatic, antispasmodic, and stomachic[218]. The roots are tonic and antispasmodic[243]. They are said to be one of the best stomachics[4]. They are harvested in the autumn and dried for later use[4]. The leaves, placed inside the shoes, are said to be soothing for sore feet[238]. The compressed dried leaves and stems are used in moxibustion[176, 178, 218, 222, 238]. Another report says that the down from the leaves is used[4].
Other Uses
Insecticide; Repellent; Tinder.
The fresh or the dried plant repels insects, it can be used as a spray but caution is advised since it can also inhibit plant growth[20]. A weak tea made from the infused plant is a good all-purpose insecticide[201]. An essential oil from the plant kills insect larvae[218]. The down on the leaves makes a good tinder for starting fires[115].
Cultivation details
Easily grown in a well-drained circumneutral or slightly alkaline loamy soil, preferring a sunny position and a moist soil[1, 14, 200]. Plants are longer lived, more hardy and more aromatic when they are grown in a poor dry soil[245]. Tolerates a pH in the range 4.8 to 8.2. Established plants are drought tolerant[200]. Mugwort is an aggressive and invasive plant[14], it inhibits the growth of nearby plants by means of root secretions[20, 201]. The sub-species A. vulgaris parviflora. Maxim. is the form that is eaten in China[179]. There are some named varieties[200]. 'White' is a taller plant than the type species, growing to 1.5 metres. It has a strong, rather resinous or "floral" taste similar to chrysanthemum leaves and is used in soups or fried as a side dish[183]. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer[233].
Propagation
Seed - surface sow from late winter to early summer in a greenhouse and do not allow the compost to dry out. When large enough to handle, prick out the seedlings into individual pots. If growth is sufficient, they can be planted out into their permanent positions in the summer, otherwise grow them on in a cold frame for their first winter and then plant them out in the spring. Division in spring or autumn. Basal cuttings in late spring. Harvest the young shoots when about 10 - 15cm long, pot up in a lightly shaded position in a greenhouse or cold frame and plant them out when well rooted. Very easy.
Cultivars

'White'
A taller plant than the type species, growing to 1.5 metres in height. It has a strong, rather resinous or "floral" taste similar to chrysanthemum leaves and is used in soups or fried as a side dish[183].
avatar
ThreeperMan
Admin

Posts : 537
Join date : 2009-07-12
Age : 68
Location : Galveston, TX

Back to top Go down

Atriplex canescens - (Pursh.)Nutt. Grey Sage Brush

Post by ThreeperMan on Sun 12 Jul 2009, 17:29

triplex canescens - (Pursh.)Nutt.
Grey Sage Brush
Author (Pursh.)Nutt. Botanical references 11, 60, 200
Family Chenopodiaceae Genus Atriplex
Synonyms Calligonum canescens - Pursh.
Known Hazards warning signNo member of this genus contains any toxins, all have more or less edible leaves. However, if grown with artificial fertilizers, they may concentrate harmful amounts of nitrates in their leaves.
Range Central and southwestern N. America - South Dakota to Kansas, Texas, California and Mexico.
Habitat Sandy or gravelly, commonly non-saline but in other situations obviously saline, sites in Joshua tree, blackbrush, greasewood, salt desert shrub, sagebrush, mountain brush communities[270].
Edibility Rating apple iconapple iconapple iconapple icon 4 (1-5) Medicinal Rating apple icon 1 (1-5)
Physical Characteristics
icon of man icon of shrub An evergreen Shrub growing to 1.8m by 1.8m.
It is hardy to zone 7 and is not frost tender. It is in leaf all year, in flower in July, and the seeds ripen in August. The flowers are dioecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but only one sex is to be found on any one plant so both male and female plants must be grown if seed is required) and are pollinated by Wind. The plant is not self-fertile. The plant prefers light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils, requires well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very alkaline and saline soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It requires dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought. The plant can tolerate maritime exposure.
Habitats
Woodland Garden; Sunny Edge; Hedge;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Leaves; Seed.
Edible Uses: Colouring; Drink.
Leaves - cooked or raw[85, 94. A very acceptable taste with a salty tang[K]. The leaves can be used at any time of the year though winter harvesting must be light because the plant is not growing much at this time of year[K]. Seed - cooked[46, 61]. Ground into a powder, mixed with cereals and used in making cakes etc or used as a piñole[94, 95, 183]. It is small and very fiddly to utilize[K]. The ground up seed can also be mixed with water and drunk as a refreshing beverage[183]. The burnt green herb yields culinary ashes high in minerals and these are used by the Hopi Indians to enhance the colour of blue corn products[183, 257]. The ashes can be used like baking soda[257].
Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Skin; Stings.
The leaves can be made into a soapy lather and used as a wash on itches and rashes such as chickenpox[257]. A poultice of the crushed leaves can be applied to ant bites to reduce the pain and swelling[257].
Other Uses
Dye; Fire retardant; Hedge; Potash.
A good hedge in maritime areas, it responds well to trimming[K]. The leaves and stems were burnt by the Hopi Indians and the alkaline ash used to maintain the blue colour when cooking blue corn[216]. A yellow dye is obtained from the leaves and stems[257]. The leaves can be made into a soapy lather and used as a hair wash[257]. The plant has fire-retardant properties and can be used for barrier plantings to control bush fires[200].
Cultivation details
Requires a position in full sun in any well-drained but not too fertile soil[11, 134, 200]. Tolerates saline and very alkaline soils[200]. Plants are very tolerant of maritime exposure, though they dislike wet climates[K]. Resents root disturbance when large. Succeeds in a hot dry position. A very ornamental plant[60], though it is liable to succumb to winter wet when grown on heavy or rich soils[11, 200]. This species forms hybrids with Atriplex confertifolia and A. gardneri[270]. Dioecious. Male and female plants must be grown if seed is required. Occasional monoecious plants are found[274]. Individual plants can change sex. The change is more generally from female to male and is apparently associated with stress such as cold or drought. It would appear that the change confers a survival advantage on the plant[274].
Propagation
Seed - sow April/May in a cold frame in a compost of peat and sand. Germination usually takes place within 1 - 3 weeks at 13°c[134]. Pot up the seedlings when still small into individual pots, grow on in a greenhouse for the first winter and plant out in late spring or early summer after the last expected frosts. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, July/August in a very sandy compost in a frame. Very easy. Pot up as soon as they start to root (about 3 weeks) and plant out in their permanent positions late in the following spring[K]. Cuttings of mature wood of the current season's growth, November/December in a frame. Very easy. Pot up in early spring and plant out in their permanent position in early summer[K].
avatar
ThreeperMan
Admin

Posts : 537
Join date : 2009-07-12
Age : 68
Location : Galveston, TX

Back to top Go down

Basella alba - L. Indian Spinach

Post by ThreeperMan on Sun 12 Jul 2009, 17:31

Basella alba - L.
Indian Spinach
Author L. Botanical references 200, 266
Family Basellaceae Genus Basella
Synonyms Basella rubra - L.
Known Hazards None known
Range E. Asia. Africa.
Habitat Moist places in hedges to elevations of about 500 metres in Nepal[272].
Edibility Rating apple iconapple icon 2 (1-5) Medicinal Rating apple iconapple icon 2 (1-5)
Physical Characteristics
icon of man icon of climber Perennial Climber growing to 9m at a fast rate.
It is hardy to zone 10 and is frost tender. It is in flower from May to September, and the seeds ripen from July to October. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very acid soil. It cannot grow in the shade. It requires moist soil.
Habitats
Cultivated Beds;
Cultivars: (as above except)
'Eclipse'
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Leaves.
Edible Uses: Colouring; Tea.
Leaves and stem tips - raw or cooked[200]. A pleasant mild spinach flavour[206], the leaves can be used as a spinach or added to salads[183]. Do not overcook the leaves or they will become slimy[206]. The mucilaginous qualities of the plant make it an excellent thickening agent in soups, stews etc where it can be used as a substitute for okra, Abelmoschatus esculentus[206]. A nutritional analysis of the leaves is available[218]. An infusion of the leaves is a tea substitute[183]. The purplish sap from the fruit is used as a food colouring in pastries and sweets. The colour is enhanced by adding some lemon juice[183].
Composition
Figures in grams (g) or miligrams (mg) per 100g of food.

Leaves (Dry weight)

* 275 Calories per 100g
* Water: 0%
* Protein: 20g; Fat: 3.5g; Carbohydrate: 54g; Fibre: 9g; Ash: 19g;
* Minerals - Calcium: 3000mg; Phosphorus: 0mg; Iron: 0mg; Magnesium: 0mg; Sodium: 0mg; Potassium: 0mg; Zinc: 0mg;
* Vitamins - A: 50mg; Thiamine (B1): 0.7mg; Riboflavin (B2): 1.8mg; Niacin: 7.5mg; B6: 0mg; C: 1200mg;
* Reference: []
* Notes:

Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Antidote; Aperient; Astringent; Demulcent; Diuretic; Febrifuge; Laxative; Rubefacient.
Astringent - the cooked roots are used in the treatment of diarrhoea[206, 264]. Laxative - the cooked leaves and stems are used[206, 264]. The flowers are used as an antidote to poisons[218]. A paste of the root is applied to swellings and is also used as a rubefacient[272]. The plant is febrifuge, its juice is a safe aperient for pregnant women and a decoction has been used to alleviate labour[218]. The leaf juice is a demulcent, used in cases of dysentery[218]. It is also diuretic, febrifuge and laxative[218]. The leaf juice is used in Nepal to treat catarrh[272]. A paste of the leaves is applied externally to treat boils[272].
Other Uses
Dye.
A red dye is obtained from the juice of the fruits[206]. It has been used as a rouge and also as a dye for official seals[218].
Cultivation details
Requires a well-drained moisture-retentive soil rich in organic matter and a warm sunny sheltered position[200]. Prefers a sandy loam[206]. Tolerates fairly poor soils but does much better in rich soils[206]. Tolerates high rainfall[206]. Tolerates a pH in the range 4.3 to 7. A frost-tender perennial, it is not hardy outdoors in Britain but can be grown as a spring-sown annual[200]. A fast growing plant, capable of producing a crop within 70 days from seed in a warm climate[200, 264], though it requires a minimum daytime temperature of 15°c if it is to keep growing vigorously so it seldom does well outdoors in Britain[264]. It does tolerate low light levels plus night temperatures occasionally falling below 10°c, and so can do well in a cold greenhouse[206]. Plants do not flower if the length of daylight is more than 13 hours per day[200]. Widely cultivated for its edible leaves in the tropics[200], there are some named varieties[183]. It is an excellent hot weather substitute for spinach[183]. Some authorities recognize three different species, B. alba, B. rubra and B. cordifolia[206], they are all treated here as being part of one species[K].
Propagation
Seed - sow March or April in a warm greenhouse. The seed requires a minimum temperature of 18 - 21°c in order to germinate[264], it germinates within 10 - 21 days at 20°c, pre-soaking the seed for 24 hours in warm water shortens the germination time[206]. As soon as they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots of fairly rich compost and grow them on fast, planting them out after the last expected frosts. Stem cuttings[200]. These can be taken in the late summer, overwintered in a greenhouse and then be planted out in late spring or early summer.
Cultivars

'Eclipse'
Producing a crop in 55 - 60 days in warm areas, this is a very early cultivar producing small and compact plants that can be planted close together[183]. The leaves are thick and medium to deep green in colour[183]. Yields very well under warm humid conditions[183].
'Red'
The leaves, stems and flowers are tinged with red. The colour is lost when the plant is cooked and so it is best used in salads[183]
avatar
ThreeperMan
Admin

Posts : 537
Join date : 2009-07-12
Age : 68
Location : Galveston, TX

Back to top Go down

Borago officinalis - L. Borage

Post by ThreeperMan on Sun 12 Jul 2009, 17:35

Borago officinalis - L.
Borage
Author L. Botanical references 200
Family Boraginaceae Genus Borago
Synonyms
Known Hazards warning signThe plant, but not the oil obtained from the seeds, contains small amounts of pyrrolizidine alkaloids that can cause liver damage and liver cancer[238]. These alkaloids are present in too small a quantity to be harmful unless you make borage a major part of your diet, though people with liver problems would be wise to avoid using the leaves or flowers of this plant[K].
Range C. Europe. A garden escape in Britain[17].
Habitat Waste ground near houses in Britain[17].
Edibility Rating apple iconapple iconapple icon 3 (1-5) Medicinal Rating apple iconapple iconapple icon 3 (1-5)
Physical Characteristics
icon of man icon of perennial/biennial/annual Annual growing to 0.6m by 0.3m.
It is hardy to zone 7 and is not frost tender. It is in flower from June to October, and the seeds ripen from July to October. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees. It is noted for attracting wildlife. The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils, requires well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very alkaline soil. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It requires dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought.
Habitats
Hedgerow; Cultivated Beds; South Wall In; West Wall In;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Flowers; Leaves.
Edible Uses: Colouring; Oil; Tea.
Leaves - raw or cooked[2, 5, 7, 14, 115, 183]. They can be used as a pot-herb or be added to salads[4]. They are also added whole as a flavouring to various drinks such as Pimms and wine-based drinks[238]. The leaves are rich in potassium and calcium, they have a salty cucumber flavour[200]. Very hairy, the whole leaves have an unpleasant feeling in the mouth and so they are best chopped up finely and added to other leaves when eaten in a salad[K]. The leaves should always be used fresh, because they lose their flavour and colour if dried[244]. Flowers - raw. They are used as a decorative garnish on salads and summer fruit drinks[2, 5, 7, 14, 183]. The flowers are very nice, both to look at and to taste with a sweet slightly cucumber-like flavour[K]. A refreshing tea is made from the leaves and/or the flowers[21, 183]. The dried stems are used for flavouring beverages[183]. The seed yields 30% oil, 20% of which is gamma-linolenic acid[141]. Total yields are 0.35 - 0.65 tonnes per hectare[141]. Unfortunately, the seed ripens intermittently over a period of time and falls from the plant when it is ripe, this makes harvesting the seeds in quantity very difficult[K]. An edible blue dye can be obtained from the flowers. It is used to colour vinegar[183].
Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Demulcent; Depurative; Diaphoretic; Diuretic; Emollient; Expectorant; Febrifuge; Hypotensive; Lenitive; Poultice; Sedative; Skin; Women's complaints.
Borage is a fairly common domestic herbal remedy that has been used since ancient times[244]. It has a particularly good reputation for its beneficial affect on the mind, being used to dispel melancholy and induce euphoria[244]. It is a soothing saline, diuretic herb that soothes damaged or irritated tissues[238]. The leaves, and to a lesser extent the flowers, are demulcent, diaphoretic, depurative, mildly diuretic, emollient, expectorant, febrifuge, lenitive and mildly sedative[4, 7, 9, 14, 201, 238]. An infusion is taken internally in the treatment of a range of ailments including fevers, chest problems and kidney problems[4], though it should not be prescribed to people with liver problems. Externally it is used as a poultice for inflammatory swellings[4, 7]. The leaves are harvested in late spring and the summer as the plant comes into flower. They can be used fresh or dried but should not be stored for more than one year because they soon lose their medicinal properties[238]. The seeds are a rich source of gamma-linolenic acid, this oil helps to regulate the hormonal systems and lowers blood pressure[238]. It is used both internally and externally, helping to relieve skin complaints and pre-menstrual tension[238].
Other Uses
Dye; Repellent.
The growing plant is said to repel insects[14]. A blue dye is obtained from the flowers[7]. This turns pink on contact with acids[238].
Cultivation details
A very easily grown plant, succeeding in ordinary garden soil[1], preferring a dry soil[37] and a sunny position[138]. It grows particularly well in loose, stony soils with some chalk and sand[244]. Plants are tolerant of poor dry soils, though much bigger specimens are produced when the plants are growing in better conditions[238]. Tolerates a pH in the range 4.8 to 8.3. Borage is often grown as a culinary plant in the herb garden[1, 7]. Although an annual, it usually maintains itself by self-sowing, sometimes in quite a prolific manner, as long as the soil is disturbed by hoeing etc[14, 188]. Plants often develop mildew when growing in dry conditions or towards the end of the growing season[238]. Flowers are a deeper blue when grown in poorer soils[138]. The flowers are rich in a sweet nectar and are very attractive to bees[7, 14, 20, 108, 244]. The growing plant is a good companion for strawberries, tomatoes, courgettes and most other plants[14, 201, 238]. It is said to deter Japanese beetle and tomato hornworms[238].
Propagation
Seed - sow April/May in situ. The plants quickly develop a stout tap-root and do not transplant successfully[238]. The seed can also be sown in situ in the autumn, this will produce larger plants and earlier flowering[4]. The plant usually self-sows prolifically.
avatar
ThreeperMan
Admin

Posts : 537
Join date : 2009-07-12
Age : 68
Location : Galveston, TX

Back to top Go down

Calendula officinalis - L. Pot Marigold

Post by ThreeperMan on Sun 12 Jul 2009, 17:36

Calendula officinalis - L.
Pot Marigold
Author L. Botanical references 200
Family Compositae Genus Calendula
Synonyms
Known Hazards None known
Range S. Europe. A garden escape in Britain[17].
Habitat The original habitat is obscure but it is found as a garden escape on waste, cultivated and arable land and along roadsides[200].
Edibility Rating apple iconapple iconapple icon 3 (1-5) Medicinal Rating apple iconapple iconapple iconapple iconapple icon 5 (1-5)
Physical Characteristics
icon of man icon of perennial/biennial/annual Annual growing to 0.6m by 0.5m.
It is hardy to zone 6 and is not frost tender. It is in flower from June to November, and the seeds ripen from August to November. The flowers are monoecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but both sexes can be found on the same plant) and are pollinated by Bees. It is noted for attracting wildlife. The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils, requires well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very acid and very alkaline soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It requires moist soil.
Habitats
Cultivated Beds;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Flowers; Leaves.
Edible Uses: Colouring; Tea.
Leaves - raw[14, 21]. When eaten they first of all impart a viscid sweetness, followed by a strong penetrating taste of a saline nature[4]. They are very rich in vitamins and minerals and are similar to Taraxacum officinale (Dandelion) in nutritional value[179]. Fresh petals are chopped and added to salads[183]. The dried petals have a more concentrated flavour and are used as a seasoning in soups, cakes etc[183]. High in vitamins A and C[218]. An edible yellow dye is obtained from the petals[46]. A saffron substitute[21], it is used to colour and flavour rice, soups etc[2, 14, 27, 33]. It is also used as a hair rinse, adding golden tints to brown or auburn hair[201]. A tea is made from the petals and flowers, that made from the petals is less bitter[183]. There is no record of the seed being edible, but it contains up to 37% protein and 46% oil[218].
Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Antiphlogistic; Antiseptic; Antispasmodic; Aperient; Astringent; Cholagogue; Diaphoretic; Emmenagogue; Homeopathy; Skin; Stimulant; Vulnerary; Warts.
Pot marigold is one of the best known and versatile herbs in Western herbal medicine and is also a popular domestic remedy[4, 254]. It is, above all, a remedy for skin problems and is applied externally to bites and stings, sprains, wounds, sore eyes, varicose veins etc[4, 254]. It is also a cleansing and detoxifying herb and is taken internally in treating fevers and chronic infections[4, 254]. Only the common deep-orange flowered variety is considered to be of medicinal value[4]. The whole plant, but especially the flowers and the leaves, is antiphlogistic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, aperient, astringent, cholagogue, diaphoretic, emmenagogue, skin, stimulant and vulnerary[4, 7, 9, 21, 46, 165, 201]. The leaves can be used fresh or dried, they are best harvested in the morning of a fine sunny day just after the dew has dried from them[4]. The flowers are also used fresh or dried, for drying they are harvested when fully open and need to be dried quickly in the shade[4]. A tea of the petals tones up the circulation and, taken regularly, can ease varicose veins[201]. An application of the crushed stems to corns and warts will soon render them easily removable[7]. The leaves, blossoms and buds are used to make a homeopathic remedy[232]. It is used internally in order to speed the healing of wounds[232].
Other Uses
Compost; Cosmetic; Dye; Essential; Repellent; Weather forecasting.
The growing plant acts as an insect deterrent[14], it reduces the soil eelworm population[24]. The flowers are used cosmetically. They can be used in skin lotions and when added to hair shampoos will lighten the hair colour[244]. The flowers are an alternative ingredient of 'Quick Return' compost activator[32]. 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]. A yellow dye is obtained from the boiled flowers[2, 4, 46]. An essential oil is obtained from the plant[7]. It is used rather sparingly, in view of the difficulty in obtaining it, in perfumes that have a rather sharp tang[7]. The flowers close when wet weather is likely to occur and they can therefore be used as a rough means of weather forecasting[7].
Scented Plants

Plant: Crushed
All parts of the plant are pungently scented.

Cultivation details
An easily grown plant, it succeeds in any well-drained soil[200, 268], though it prefers a good loam and requires a sunny or at least partially sunny position[4, 15, 200, 268]. Plants flower best when they are grown in a poor soil[108]. Tolerates a pH in the range 4.5 to 8.3. The pot marigold is a very ornamental plant that is commonly grown in the flower garden, and occasionally as a culinary herb, there are some named varieties[183]. When well-sited it usually self-sows freely and will maintain itself if allowed[1, 4]. The flowers are sensitive to variations in temperature and dampness, closing when it is dark and when rain is expected[7, 244]. All parts of the plant are pungently scented[245]. The growing plant attracts hoverflies to the garden, the young of which are fairly efficient eaters of aphids[24, 201]. The flowers are attractive to bees[108]. Marigolds are good companion plants, they grow well with tomatoes[14]. Cucumber mosaic disease and powdery mildew can cause problems with this plant[188].
Propagation
Seed - sow in situ from spring to early summer and again in September. The seed germinates best in darkness and usually within 1 - 2 weeks at 21°c[138]. The plant often self-sows freely.
Cultivars

No entries have been made for this species as yet.
avatar
ThreeperMan
Admin

Posts : 537
Join date : 2009-07-12
Age : 68
Location : Galveston, TX

Back to top Go down

Camellia sinensis - (L.)Kuntze. Tea Plant

Post by ThreeperMan on Sun 12 Jul 2009, 17:38

Camellia sinensis - (L.)Kuntze.
Tea Plant
Author (L.)Kuntze. Botanical references 11, 200
Family Theaceae Genus Camellia
Synonyms Camellia bohea - L.
Camellia thea - Link.
Camellia theifera - Griff.
Thea bohea - L.
Thea sinensis - L.
Thea viridis - L.
Known Hazards None known
Range E. Asia - China? Exact origin is uncertain.
Habitat Shaded areas[192] at an elevation of 2100 - 2700 metres in Yunnan[11].
Edibility Rating apple iconapple iconapple iconapple icon 4 (1-5) Medicinal Rating apple iconapple iconapple iconapple icon 4 (1-5)
Physical Characteristics
icon of man icon of shrub An evergreen Shrub growing to 4m by 2.5m at a slow rate.
It is hardy to zone 8. It is in leaf all year, in flower from March to May. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees. The plant is not self-fertile. The plant prefers light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers acid and neutral soils and can grow in very acid soil. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland). It requires moist soil.
Habitats
Woodland Garden; Sunny Edge; Dappled Shade; Shady Edge;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Leaves.
Edible Uses: Colouring; Condiment; Oil; Tea.
The leaves are infused in hot water and used as the drink that is commonly known as tea. It is widely drunk in many areas of the world. Green tea is made from the steamed and dried leaves, whilst black tea (the form most commonly drunk in the west) is made from leaves that have been fermented and then dried[183, 238]. Tea contains polyphenols, these are antioxidants that help to protect the body against heart diseases, stroke and cancer[238]. It also contains the stimulant caffeine which, when taken in excess, can cause sleeplessness and irritability and also, through its action as a diuretic, act to remove nutrients from the body. Tea is also rich in tannin and is a possible cause of oesophageal cancer[238]. Cold tea is sometimes used as a soaking liquid to flavour dried fruit[238]. One report says that the leaves are used as a boiled vegetable[179]. The leaves contain about 25.7% protein, 6.5% fat, 40.8% carbohydrate, 5% ash, 3.3% caffeine, 12.9% tannin[179]. Terminal sprouts with 2-3 leaves are usually hand-plucked, 10 kg of green shoots (75-80% water) produce about 2.5 kg dried tea[269]. The bushes are plucked every 7-15 days, depending on the development of the tender shoots. Leaves that are slow in development always make a better flavoured product[269]. Various techniques are used to produce black teas, usually during July and August when solar heat is most intense. Freshly picked leaves are spread very thinly and evenly on trays and placed in the sun until the leaves become very flaccid, requiring 13 hours or more, depending on heat and humidity. Other types of black teas are made by withering the leaves, rolling them into a ball and allowing to ferment in a damp place for 3-6 hours, at which time the ball turns a yellowish copper colour, with an agreeable fruity one[269]. If this stage goes too far, the leaves become sour and unfit for tea. After fermenting, the ball is broken up and the leaves spread out on trays and dried in oven until leaves are brittle and have slight odour of tea[269]. Tea is then stored in air-tight tin boxes or cans. As soon as harvested, leaves are steamed or heated to dry the natural sap and prevent oxidation to produce green tea. Still soft and pliable after the initial treatment, the leaves are then rolled and subjected to further firing. Thus dried, the leaves are sorted into various grades of green tea[269]. The flowers are made into 'tempura' using the edible oil that is obtained from the seed[183]. A clear golden-yellow edible oil resembling sasanqua oil is obtained from the seed[183, 269]. The oil needs to be refined before it is eaten. An essential oil distilled from the fermented dried leaves is used as a commercial food flavouring[238]. Tea extract is used as a flavour in alcoholic beverages, frozen dairy desserts, candy, baked goods, gelatines, and puddings[269]. Tea is a potential source of food colours (black, green, orange, yellow, etc.)[269].
Composition
Figures in grams (g) or miligrams (mg) per 100g of food.

Leaves (Dry weight)

* 0 Calories per 100g
* Water: 0%
* Protein: 25.7g; Fat: 6.5g; Carbohydrate: 40.8g; Fibre: 0g; Ash: 5g;
* Minerals - Calcium: 0mg; Phosphorus: 0mg; Iron: 0mg; Magnesium: 0mg; Sodium: 0mg; Potassium: 0mg; Zinc: 0mg;
* Vitamins - A: 0mg; Thiamine (B1): 0mg; Riboflavin (B2): 0mg; Niacin: 0mg; B6: 0mg; C: 0mg;
* Reference: []
* Notes:

Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Astringent; Cardiotonic; Diuretic; Stimulant.
The tea plant is commonly used in Chinese herbalism, where it is considered to be one of the 50 fundamental herbs[218]. Modern research has shown that there are many health benefits to drinking tea, including its ability to protect the drinker from certain heart diseases. It has also been shown that drinking tea can protect the teeth from decay[254], because of the fluoride naturally occurring in the tea[K]. However, the tea also contains some tannin, which is suspected of being carcinogenic[269]. The leaves are cardiotonic, diuretic, expectorant, stimulant and astringent[4, 174, 192, 218, 240, 269]. They exert a decided influence over the nervous system, giving a feeling of comfort and exhilaration, but also producing an unnatural wakefulness when taken in large doses[4]. They are used internally in the treatment of diarrhoea, dysentery, hepatitis and gastro-enteritis[218, 238]. Tea is reportedly effective in clinical treatment of amoebic dysentery, bacterial dysentery, gastro-enteritis, and hepatitis. It has also been reported to have antiatherosclerotic effects and vitamin P activity[269]. Excessive use, however, can lead to dizziness, constipation, constipation, indigestion, palpitations and insomnia[238]. Externally, they are used as a poultice or wash to treat cuts, burns, bruises, insect bites, ophthalmia, swellings etc[218, 238, 257]. Only the very young leaves and leaf buds are used, these can be harvested throughout the growing season from plants over three years old and are dried for later use[238]. Teabags have been poulticed onto baggy or tired eyes, compressed onto headache, or used to bathe sunburn[269].
Other Uses
Dye; Essential; Oil; Tannin; Wood.
An essential oil is distilled from the fermented and dried leaves[238]. It is used in perfumery and in commercial food flavouring[238]. A non-drying oil is obtained from the seeds. Refined teaseed oil, made by removing the free fatty acids with caustic soda, then bleaching the oil with Fuller's earth and a sprinkling of bone black, makes an oil suitable for use in manufacture of sanctuary or signal oil for burning purposes, and in all respects is considered a favourable substitute for rapeseed, olive, or lard oils. The oil is different from cottonseed, corn, or sesame oils in that it is a non-drying oil and is not subject to oxidation changes, thus making it very suitable for use in the textile industry; it remains liquid below -18deg.C[269]. A grey dye is obtained from the pink or red petals[168]. The leaves contain 13 - 18% tannin[223]. The leaves also contain quercetin, a dyestuff that, when found in other plants, is much used as a dye[223]. The quantity of quercetin is not given[K]. Wood - moderately hard, close and even grained. It is very good for walking sticks[158].
Scented Plants

Flowers: Fresh
The flowers are deliciously scented.

Cultivation details
Prefers a woodland soil but thrives in a warm open well-drained loam if leafmould is added[1, 11, 200]. A calcifuge plant, preferring a pH between 5 and 7[11, 200]. Prefers the partial shade of a light woodland or a woodland clearing[166, 200]. Forms grown in this country are slow-growing[219]. Tea is reported to tolerate an annual precipitation of 70 to 310cm, an average annual temperature range of 14 to 27°C and a pH in the range of 4.5 to 7.3[269]. This species is not hardy in the colder areas of the country, it tolerates temperatures down to between -5 and -10°c[200]. It prefers a wet summer and a cool but not very frosty dry winter[200]. The fragrant flowers are very attractive to insects, particularly moths[219]. Plants are not very self-compatible, self-fertilized flowers produce few seeds and these are of low viability[200]. A very ornamental plant[1], it is widely cultivated in tropical and warm temperate areas for its leaves which are used to make China tea[1]. There are many named varieties[183] and new hardier forms are being produced in China for growing in colder areas of the country[260]. The Chinese form, known as 'Hsüeh-ch'a', is said to grow in areas within the snow limit on the mountains of Lingchiangfu in Yunnan province[178]. The sub-species C. sinensis assamica. (Mast.)Kitam. is a larger plant, growing up to 17 metres tall. It is a more tropical form of the species, is intolerant of frost and does not succeed outdoors in Britain[11, 260].
Propagation
Seed - can be sown as soon as it is ripe in a greenhouse[113]. Stored seed should be pre-soaked for 24 hours in warm water and the hard covering around the micropyle should be filed down to leave a thin covering[78, 113, 138]. It usually germinates in 1 - 3 months at 23°c[138]. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and grow them on in light shade in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions when they are more than 15cm tall and give them some protection from winter cold for their first year or three outdoors[K]. Seedlings take 4 - 12 years before they start to produce seed[269]. There are approximately 500 seeds per kilo[269]. Cuttings of almost ripe wood, 10 - 15cm with a heel, August/September in a shaded frame. High percentage but slow[78]. Cuttings of firm wood, 7 - 10cm with a heel, end of June in a frame[11, 78]. Keep in a cool greenhouse for the first year[11]. Leaf-bud cuttings, July/August in a frame.
Cultivars

'Hsüeh-ch'a'
This is a Chinese form that is said to grow in areas within the snow limit on the mountains of Lingchiangfu in Yunnan province[178].
avatar
ThreeperMan
Admin

Posts : 537
Join date : 2009-07-12
Age : 68
Location : Galveston, TX

Back to top Go down

Re: Colouring: edible dyes

Post by Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

View previous topic View next topic Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum