Posts Tagged ‘orange’

Corn Poppy – Papaver rhoeas

Corn Poppy
Corn Poppy

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

– John McCrae

A hardy annual native to Europe, but has been naturalized throughout the United States

The foliage is said to have been used as a vegetable, and the syrup prepared from the petals has been employed as an ingredient in soups and gruels.

Attempts have also been made to utilize the brilliant red of the petals as a dye, but the color has proved too fugitive (unstable) to be of use. The syrup has, however, been used as a coloring matter for old ink.

This plant normally has red petals, which were an ingredient in Syrup of Red Poppy, a sedative and a cough suppressant for children. The corn poppy is also known as the field poppy, the Flanders poppy or the red poppy. It contains rhoeadine, a sleep-inducing and pain-relieving alkaloid similar to (yet safer than) opium alkaloids. The crimson flowers of this plant are traditionally used to make a soporific tea. To prepare this infusion, add 1 to 2 tsp. of dried petals to a cup of hot water. Allow the mixture to steep for 10 to 15 minutes. Consume the infusion before going to bed.

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Orange Touch Me Not – Impatiens capensis

Orange Touch Me Not or Spotted Jewelweed

The Jewelweed plant has been used for centuries in North America by Native Americans of several different tribes, and Herbalists, as a natural preventative and treatment for poison ivy and poison oak; and is a folk remedy for many other skin disorders. The juice (sap) of the jewelweed has been used by Native Americans, and others, as a preventative against poison ivy rash, and as a treatment after the eruptions have occurred

The juice of the leaves is used externally in the treatment of piles, fungal dermatitis, nettle stings, poison ivy rash, burns etc. The sap is used to remove warts. A poultice of the leaves is applied to bruises, burns, cuts etc

If you want bees, butterflies and hummingbirds to visit, this is a great addition! As a kid it was a favorite pasttime to find a stand of these, or their cousin the Pale Jewelweed, and just stand there looking for seedheads ready to burst, and making it happen!

Butterfly Weed – Asclepias tuberose

Butterfly weed

Butterfly Weed or Pleurisy Root is a smaller member of the Milkweed family. It is said that the plant hates its roots disturbed, so does not transplant well; but I have transplanted several roots, with two definite successes! I first noticed this plant in a field opposite my house back in the early 1970’s. I really liked it then, but after my kids grew up and my youngest daughter earned her Native American name (loosely translates into Butterfly Woman) I fell in love with it!

Yellow Butterfly Weed

In the 19th Century Butterfly Weed was listed as an official medicine in the American Pharmacopoeia from 1820 to 1905. As its other common name implies (Pleurisy Root) has been used in lung diseases and complaints. In bronchitis, pleurisy, and pneumonia it reduces inflammations, and assists in expectoration of mucous. The Cherokee Indians of North America used a root tea to treat diarrhea and heart conditions as well as the lung complaints.

Daylily – Hemerocallis fulva

The species name means “beautiful for a day,” and it is so true. Each flower only lasts a day, it then withers away; a new flower will replace it on the marrow. This is another of the plants an elder neighbor gifted us with this year. I was completely surprised when they flowered not 2 weeks after transplant. They are extremely hardy and spread by stolons underground. If left undisturbed they will make large colonies of plants.

I have placed some in shade at the edge of the trees that line the property border; they will bloom less abundantly, but will naturalize the area well.

In China and Japan they are used to treat cancer, arsenic poisoning, uterine bleeding, vaginal yeast infections, as a diuretic and to treat urinary tract disorders. The fresh flowers can be added to a salad; the buds can be added to stir fry, mixed veggies, and added to soups or stews. All parts of the daylily are edible, and have been cultivated for thousands of years in Asia for food and medicine.

Not only are these plants beautiful, they are healthy in many ways. With the exception of cats; daylilies are harmful to the kidneys of domestic cats.