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Herb | Plant Lexica

Herb

German Iris
  • Botanical: Iris germanica
  • Family: Iridaceae
  • Known as: Deutsche Schwertlilie, Ritter-Schwertlilie
  • Old Use: medical, industry

German Iris

Iris germanica grows up to 120 cm high and 30 cm wide. The roots can go up to 10 cm deep. It is a rhizomatous perennial that blooms in April to June. Lifting, dividing and replanting the rhizomes is best done once flowering has finished as this is when the plant grows the new shoots that will flower the following year. The rhizomes are placed on the surface of the soil facing towards the sun and with at least 45cm of open ground in front of them - this allows two years growth and flowering. The plant is held in place by removing half the leaf mass to reduce wind rock and by using the old roots as anchors in the soil. The rhizome is placed on well dug ground and the roots placed either side into 10cm deep grooves. The soil os then gently firmed around the roots, so holding the plant steady. New roots and leaves are created rapidly as the rhizome moves forwards.

Ginger
  • Botanical: Zingiber officinale
  • Family: Zingiberaceae
  • Known as: Curcuma petiolata, Hidden Lily, Jewel of Thailand, Siam Tulip, Hidden Ginger, Queen lily, Ingber, Imber, Immerwurzel, Ingwerwurzel
  • Old Use: culinary; medicinal
  • Aroma: citrus, fresh, fruity, spicy, warm, woody

Ginger

Ginger is a spice and more popular in Central Europe, probably because the exotic cuisine, spreading more and more. Many grocery stores now have to get fresh ginger roots.

But not only as an exotic spice, ginger is suitable, but also a valuable remedy. His special ability is to eliminate nausea.

Goldenseal
  • Botanical: Hydrastis canadensis
  • Family: Ranunculaceae
  • Known as: orangeroot, yellow puccoon, Kanadische Orangenwurzel, Goldsiegelwurzel, Kanadische Gelbwurz
  • Old Use: medical; insustry

Goldenseal

It has a thick, yellow knotted rootstock. The stem is purplish and hairy above ground and yellow below ground where it connects to the yellow rhizome. The plant bears two palmate, hairy leaves with 5–7 double-toothed lobes and single, small, inconspicuous flowers with greenish white stamens in the late spring. It bears a single berry like a large raspberry with 10–30 seeds in the summer.

Gray Sarsaparilla
  • Botanical: Smilax aristolochiifolia
  • Family: Smilacaceae
  • Known as: Smilax medica, Mexican Sarsaparilla, Sarsaparilla, Stechwinden
  • Old Use: medicine, culinary
  • Aroma: spicy

Gray Sarsaparilla

Sarsaparilla is a perennial woody climber with tendrils, thin branches and extended ovate leaves that grows about 4 to 5 meters vertically. Its paper-like leaves are pinnate veined, leathery and alternatively arranged. The leaves' width ranges from 10 to 30 cm and the petioles' length is about 5 cm. It is known for its small red berries with 2 or 3 seeds and small green flowers. The flowers are radially symmetrical, dioecious and have umbel inflorescence of 12 flowers. The berries are produced in the fall or in the late summer and stays intact through the winter for animals and birds to eat. Thus the pollination occurs as the unharmed seeds are found in the feces. The surface of the stem is smooth; it also is bent and have thorns at the joints. The hairy roots of sarsaparilla are fibrous and may have few rootlets growing out. They have stiff surface and are deep-rooted, which grows from 2 to 2.5 meters. The color of the roots ranges from brownish gray to black. Sarsaparilla is a persistent plant; even when most roots are cut off from the stem, roots will grow few years later but will be slender and less starchy.

Heartsease
  • Botanical: Viola tricolor
  • Family: Viola tricolor
  • Known as: heartsease, heart's ease, heart's delight, tickle my fancy, Jack jump up and kiss me, come and cuddle me, three faces in a hood, love in idleness, Wildes Stiefmütterchen, Stiefmütterchen, Ackerveilchen, Muttergottesschuh, Mädchenaugen, Gedenkemein
  • Old Use: medical, culinary, industry
  • Aroma: fruity, herbaceius

Heartsease

The Heartsease is as variable as any of the other members of the genus, but whatever modifications of form it may present, it may always be readily distinguished from the other Violets by the general form of its foliage, which is much more cut up than in any of the other species and by the very large leafy stipules at the base of the true leaves. The stem, too, branches more than is commonly found in the other members of the genus. Besides the free branching of the stem, which is mostly 4 to 8 inches in height, it is generally very angular. The leaves are deeply cut into rounded lobes, the terminal one being considerably the largest. In the other species of Viola the foliage is ordinarily very simple in outline, heartshaped, or kidney-shaped, having its edge finely toothed. The flowers (1/4 to 1 1/4 inch across) vary a great deal in colour and size, but are either purple, yellow or white, and most commonly there is a combination of all these colours in each blossom. The upper petals are generally most showy in colour and purple in tint, while the lowest and broadest petal is usually a more or less deep tint of yellow. The base of the lowest petal is elongated into a spur, as in the Violet. The flowers are in due course succeeded by the little capsules of seeds, which when ripe, open by three valves. Though a near relative of the Violet, it does not produce any of the curious bud-like flowers - cleistogamous flowers - characteristic of the Violet, as its ordinary showy flowers manage to come to fruition so that there is no necessity for any others. Darwin found that the humble bee was the commonest insect visitor of the Heartsease, though the moth Pluvia visited it largely - another observer mentions Thrips small wingless insects - as frequent visitors to the flowers. Darwin considered that the cultivated Pansy rarely set seed if there were no insect visitors, but that the little Field Pansy can certainly fertilize itself if necessary. The flower protects itself from rain and dew by drooping its head both at night and in wet weather, and thus the back of the flower and not its face receives the moisture.

Henbane Black
  • Botanical: Hyoscyamus niger
  • Family: Solanaceae
  • Known as: Common Henbane. Hyoscyamus. Hog's-bean. Jupiter's-bean. Symphonica. Cassilata. Cassilago. Deus Caballinus. (Anglo-Saxon) Henbell. (French) Jusquiame.
  • Old Use: medical

Henbane Black

The annual and biennial form spring indifferently from the same crop of seed, the former growing during summer to a height of from 1 to 2 feet, and flowering and perfecting seed, the latter producing the first season only a tuft of radical leaves, which disappear in winter, leaving underground a thick, fleshy root, from the crown of which arises in spring a branched, flowering stem, usually much taller and more vigorous than the flowering stems of the annual plants. The annual form is apparently produced by the weaker and later developed seeds formed in the fruit at the ends of the shoots; it is considered to be less active than the typical species and differs in being of dwarfed growth and having rather paler flowers. The British drug of commerce consists of dense flowering shoots only, and of larger size.

Hollyhock
  • Botanical: Althaea rosea
  • Family: Malvaceae
  • Known as: Common Hollyhock, Bauerneibisch, Baummalve, Gartenmalve, Herbstrose, Pappelrose, Roseneibisch, Schwarze Malve, Stockmalve, Winterrose
  • Old Use: medicinal use

Hollyhock

It is a tall, upright perennial has single flowers of various colors that grow along a spike. It blooms in early summer and midsummer.

A. rosea is a robust biennial or short-lived perennial to 2m or more, with shallowly lobed, rounded leaves and long erect racemes of open funnel-shaped flowers to 10cm across, which may be pink, purple, red, white or yellow

Hops
  • Botanical: Humulus lupulus
  • Family: Cannabaceae
  • Known as: Hops, Humulus lupulus, Hoppen, Hopf, Hecken-Hopfen, Weiden-Hopfen
  • Old Use: culinary; medicinal

Hops

The root is stout and perennial. The stem that arises from it every year is of a twining nature, reaching a great length, flexible and very tough, angled and prickly, with a tenacious fibre.
The leaves are heart-shaped and lobed, on foot-stalks, and as a rule placed opposite one another on the stem, though sometimes the upper leaves are arranged singly on the stem, springing from altenate sides. They are of a dark-green colour with their edges finely toothed.

Horehound
  • Botanical: Marrubium vulgare
  • Family: Lamiaceae or Labiatae
  • Known as: white horehound, common horehound, Gewöhnlicher Andorn, Weißer Andorn, Gemeiner Andorn, Helfkraut, Weißer Dorant
  • Old Use: medical, culinary, industry
  • Aroma: sharp

Horehound

It is a grey-leaved herbaceous perennial plant, somewhat resembling mint in appearance, and grows to 25–45 centimetres (10–18 in) tall. The leaves are 2–5 cm (0.8–2.0 in) long with a densely crinkled surface, and are covered in downy hairs. The flowers are white, borne in clusters on the upper part of the main stem.

  • Botanical: Carapichea ipecacuanha
  • Family: Rubiaceae
  • Known as: Ipecacuanha, Brechwurzel, Ruhrwurzel
  • Old Use: medical

Ipecacuanha

The plant has a slender stem which grows partly underground and is often procumbent at the base, the lower portion being knotted. Fibrous rootlets are given off from the knots, and some of them develop an abnormally thick bark, in which much starch is deposited. The thickened rootlets alone are collected and dried for medicinal use, since the active constituents of the drug are found chiefly in the bark.

Irish Moss
  • Botanical: Chondrus crispus
  • Family: Algae
  • Known as: Carrageen moss, Knorpeltang, Knorpelmoos, Irisch Moos, Irländisches Moos, Perlmoos, Carrageen Alge

Irish Moss

Cartilaginous, dark purplish-red, red, yellowish or greenish fronds to 150 mm high, gametophyte plants are often iridescent under water when in good condition. Stipe compressed, narrow, expanding gradually to a flat, repeatedly dichotomously branched frond, in tufts from a discoid holdfast. Axils rounded, apices blunt or subacute, frond thicker in centre than margins. Very variable in breadth of segments. Very variable in branching, colour and thickness.

Jequirity
  • Botanical: Abrus precatorius
  • Family: Leguminosae
  • Known as: Crab's Eye, Rosary Pea, Precatory Pea, John Crow Bead, Indian licorice, Akar Saga, Gidee Gidee, Jumbie Bead, Paternostererbse, Paternosterbohne, Krabbenaugenwein

Jequirity

The root of an Indian leguminous plant, Abrus precatorius (Linn.), under the native names of Gunga or Goonteh, has been used as a demulcent. It contains Glycyrrhizin, and has been termed Indian Liquorice and used as a substitute for true Liquorice. Acrid resins, however, render the root irritant and poisonous.

Jimson Weed
  • Botanical: Datura stramonium
  • Family: Solanaceae
  • Known as: Datura, Gemeiner Stechapfel, Weiße Stechapfel
  • Old Use: medical

Jimson Weed

D. stramonium is a foul-smelling, erect, annual, freely branching herb that forms a bush up to 2 to 5 ft (60 to 150 cm) tall. The root is long, thick, fibrous and white. The stem is stout, erect, leafy, smooth, and pale yellow-green. The stem forks off repeatedly into branches, and each fork forms a leaf and a single, erect flower. The leaves are about 3–8 in (8–20 cm) long, smooth, toothed, soft, and irregularly undulated. The upper surface of the leaves is a darker green, and the bottom is a light green. The leaves have a bitter and nauseating taste, which is imparted to extracts of the herb, and remains even after the leaves have been dried. D. stramonium generally flowers throughout the summer. The fragrant flowers are trumpet-shaped, white to creamy or violet, and 2 1⁄2–3 1⁄2 in (6–9 cm) long, and grow on short stems from either the axils of the leaves or the places where the branches fork. The calyx is long and tubular, swollen at the bottom, and sharply angled, surmounted by five sharp teeth. The corolla, which is folded and only partially open, is white, funnel-shaped, and has prominent ribs. The flowers open at night, emitting a pleasant fragrance, and are fed upon by nocturnal moths. The egg-shaped seed capsule is 1–3 in (3–8 cm) in diameter and either covered with spines or bald. At maturity, it splits into four chambers, each with dozens of small, black seeds

Juniper
  • Botanical: Juniperus communis
  • Family: Cupressaceae
  • Known as: Juniperus communis L., Wacholder, Gemeiner Wacholder, Genevrier commun, Juniper
  • Old Use: Digestive problems, disease of the kidney and bladder
  • Aroma: fresh, fruity, forest, sweet, woody

Juniper

Juniperus communis L. is a coniferous evergreen shrub or a small columnar tree, multistemmed, decumbent or rarely upright. The crown is generally depressed. It grows very slowly. The morphological characteristics including growth form differ somewhat according to variety. Adventitious root development can occur when branches come in contact with the ground become buried. Juniper has a thin, brown, fibrous bark which exfoliates in thin strips.

Lavender
  • Botanical: Lavendula officinalis
  • Family: Lamiaceae
  • Known as: Lavendel, Lavandula angustifolia,
  • Old Use: medicinal; culinary

Lavender

The genus includes annual or short-lived herbaceous perennial plants, and suffrutescent perennials, subshrubs or small shrubs.

Leaf shape is diverse across the genus. They are simple in some commonly cultivated species; in others they are pinnately toothed, or pinnate, sometimes multiple pinnate and dissected. In most species the leaves are covered in fine hairs or indumentum, which normally contain the essential oils.

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