For the identification of insects and other fauna and flora of South Africa: please click on the following links:
Insects and related species: Antlions - Ants - Bees - Beetles - Bugs - Butterflies, Moths and Caterpillars - Centipedes and Millipedes - Cockroaches - Crickets - Dragonflies and Damselflies - Grasshoppers and Katydids - Mantis - Stick Insects - Ticks and Mites - Wasps - Woodlice
Plants, Trees, Flowers: (Note: Unless plants fall into a specific species such as Cacti, they have been classified by their flower colour to make them easier to find) Bonsai - Cacti, Succulents, Aloes, Euplorbia - Ferns and Cycads - Flowers - Fungi, Lichen and Moss - Grass - Trees
Animals, Birds, Reptiles etc.: Animals, Birds, Fish and Crabs - Frogs - Lizards - Scorpions - Snails and Slugs - Snakes - Spiders - Tortoise, Turtles and Terrapins - Whipscorpions
Other photography: Aeroplanes - Cars and Bikes - Travel - Sunrise - Water drops/falls - Sudwala and Sterkfontein Caves etc.

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Saturday, July 24, 2010

Medicinal Herbs - Part 2

Curry plant
The plant produces an oil from its blossoms which is used for medicinal purposes. It is anti-inflammatory, fungicidal, and astringent. It soothes burns and raw chapped skin. It is used as a fixative in perfumes and has an intense fragrance.

Although called "curry plant" it has nothing whatsoever to do with the mixture of spices used in Indian cooking, nor with the curry tree (Murraya koenigii).
Potential Anti-Ulcer Herb Medicine: Rocket 'Eruca Sativa'
ScienceDaily (May 14, 2009) — A research group from Saudi Arabia studied the anti-ulcer properties of the salad herb Rocket, also known as Arugula, species name Eruca sativa. They found that Rocket extract possesses antisecretory, cytoprotective and anti-ulcer activities against experimentally-induced gastric lesions in rats. The anti-ulcer effect is possibly through prostaglandin mediated activity and/or through its anti-secretory and antioxidant properties.
Benefits of Strawberry
Strawberries are a good source of vitamin C, and contain a large amount of fruit sugar. They are an excellent spring tonic, and are delicious when juiced.

They can be considered an eliminative food, and are good for the intestinal tract. Strawberries have an alkaline reaction in the body. Because of their high sodium content, they can be considered "a food of youth." They also have a good amount of potassium.

Many people complain about getting hives from strawberries. This is usually because they are not ripened on the vine. If you are allergic to strawberries, try this: run hot water over them, then immediately follow this by running cold water over them. This takes the fuzz off the outside of the berries, which is believed to be the cause of the hives.

The seeds of the strawberry can be irritating in cases of inflammation of the bowel or colitis.
Action, Medical Uses, and Dosage.
This plant should be ranked among the acronarcotic poisons, along with the Oenantha crocata, and the Cicutas. Boileau, Lepine, and others have found it useful as a remedy against elephantiasis of the Greeks (leprosy). Devergie, Cazenave, Waring, Hunter, etc., have derived benefit from it in chronic eczema and other cutaneous maladies, in scrofula, secondary syphilis, ulcers, and chronic rheumatism. It is an active agent, large amounts inducing headache, dizziness, and stupor, as well as bloody passages from the bowels. Itching of the skin is said to be occasioned by it also. As the root is very hygroscopic, and is not well preserved in powder, its best form for administration is in infusion, or syrup, 1 ounce of the root to 1 pint of fluid, and which may be given in doses of from 1/2 to 1 fluid ounce, repeated 3 or 4 times a day. An alcoholic extract may likewise be used in doses of from 1/4 to 3/4 of a grain. Notwithstanding the favorable reports concerning the efficiency of this plant, it has fallen into disuse, and is seldom employed at the present day.
Angelica Archangelica
Habitat: It is native to North America, Eastern Europe and Central Asia
Description: The roots of the Common Angelica are long and spindle-shaped, thick and fleshy - large specimens weighing sometimes as much as three pounds and are beset with many long, descending rootlets. The flowers, small and numerous, yellowish or greenish in color, are grouped into large, globular umbels.
Uses: Angelica is largely used in the grocery trade, as well as for medicine, and is a popular flavoring for confectionery and liqueurs. The herb is also used to combat digestive problems, gastric ulcers, anorexia, and migraines.
The synthesized essential marjoram oil is formed of a number of active substances such as terpinen, terpineol, carvacrol, ursolic acid, beta sistosterine. Along with the essential oil, tannin, bitter and sistosterine elements, marjoram is also rich in vitamins A and D. Because of these compounds, marjoram stimulates digestion, increases diuresis, absorbs gases, increases food appetite and it is recommended in nervous states or cases of insomnia.

Marjoram tea
Taken in normal doses (one teaspoon of herbs per 200 ml of water), marjoram tea stimulates appetite, digestion, eliminates gases and calms stomach pains. The tea is prepared by boiling one teaspoon of marjoram powder in a cup of water for 15 minutes. In an interval of two hours the consumption of two to four cups of marjoram infusion is recommended. The same treatment is efficient for overcoming the incipient state of the cold and, at the same time, prevents flu. To obtain a strong tea, add two teaspoons of marjoram to a cup of cold water and keep it macerating for 24 hours. After filtering, honey can be added. If the doses are increased (six teaspoons to 200 ml of water), marjoram produces a calming and antidepressive effect, induces somnolence and even a slightly euphoric state. During summers when the temperature is hardly bearable, marjoram tea is recommended especially to people with blood circulation problems because it has an adjusting effect on the body temperature. For hair revitalization, replace the washing water with a marjoram infusion obtained from 20 g of herb to one liter of water.
Description: Dill usually has one upright, hollow stem with waxy or powdery leaves divided into filaments. Umbels of small yellow flowers appear in summer, which are followed by flattish and oval seeds.
Uses: Carminative, aromatic, anti-spasmodic, anti-inflammatory, galactogogue, calmative, diuretic, stomachic. Dill is an excellent remedy for flatulence and the colic that is sometimes associated with it. It is the herb of choice for colic of children. Chewing the seeds helps to clear bad breath.
Description: It grows to a height of 8 to 12 inches from a small, elongated, bulbous root. The leaves are hollow, cylindrical, closed at the top and dilated to surround the stem at the bottom. The otherwise naked stem bears a terminal globose cluster of reddish-blue or purple flowers in June and July. The fruit is a three-sided black seed.
Uses: It is a great improvement to salads - cut fresh and chopped fine-and may be put not only into green salads, but also into cucumber salad, or sprinkled on sliced tomatoes. Chives are also useful for cutting up and mixing with the food of newly hatched turkeys.


Food, Fun and Life in the Charente said...

Interesting post. Strawberries don't give me hives, but double me up with very bad diverticulitis pains:( Diane

JM said...

What a very informative post, Joan!

I have just watched some amazing images on the news: a whale attacking (and destroying!) a yacht somewhere on the coast of South Africa. Do you know what I'm talking about?

birdy said...

This is one of my favorite posts. Love to learn about the medicinal properties of herbs. The use of dill seeds for various diseases is very common in our houses.

Jo said...

Interesting post Joan, I'm marking it FFR. Have a wonderful weekend.

Rambling Woods said...

Interesting Joan..I just planted two more native plants here labeled as snake root.. but they are black cohosh which have been used for many things by native people and sold in health food stores...Michelle

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

I love strawberries, actually any frut, and can hardly wait until everything is in season again. It must be awful not to be able to enjoy them Diane.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks Jose.

I watched the news but did not see anything on the whale. When did it happen? I can only think that someone landed up in a pod where there were babies as they would not have reason to attack a boat otherwise.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thats very interesting Birdy. I am would rather use these natural herbs than any medication.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks Jo. Have a great weekend too. I am sure it must fell wonderful to be back with the family again? Tell John I send regards too.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Interesting info Michelle. That is one I have not heard of before and will go and check it out.

Mary said...

Are you going to do a book on these, too :-)

Craig Glenn said...

Great info but I can't believe you left out the Heal U plant! LOL

Craig Glenn

Becky and Gary said...

Sorry I've been so lax lately. No excuses except it's been so hot here, and summer is such a busy time. I'll try to be better.Really---
Thanks to all the info on these herbs. I have lots of chives and I didn't know about the "fuzz" on strawberries, and I wasn't aware they are high in sodium. Good facts Joan.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

LOL!! I don't think so Mary. Books are SO expensive here and it sems like they are soon going to be a think of the past with all those that are finding their way on line.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

With good reason Craig, people know it so well, they dont need to learn more about it. :)

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thats okay Becky, I know how busy you are. The heat really does sap all the energy out of one. Our winter has been so mild this year but now we need some rain as everything is brown and dry.

This Is My Blog - fishing guy said...

Joan: The Bug Lady knows her plants.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Not really Tom. I know trees well but this info I borrowed of the internet. :)

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