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Fennel – Foeniculum vulgare

Fennel – Foeniculum vulgare

Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare) is a plant species in the genus Foeniculum (treated as the sole species in the genus by most botanists). It is a member of the family Apiaceae (formerly the Umbelliferae).

It is a hardy, perennial, umbelliferous herb, with yellow flowers and feathery leaves.

It is indigenous to the shores of the Mediterranean, but has become widely naturalised in many parts of the world, especially on dry soils near the sea-coast and on riverbanks.

It is a highly aromatic and flavorful herb with culinary and medicinal uses, and, along with the similar-tasting anise, is one of the primary ingredients of absinthe.

Florence fennel or finocchio is a selection with a swollen, bulb-like stem base that is used as a vegetable.

Fennel is used as a food plant by the larvae of some Lepidoptera species including the mouse moth and the anise swallowtail.

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Clove

Clove

Cloves (Syzygium aromaticum) are the aromatic dried flower buds of a tree in the family Myrtaceae. Cloves are native to the Maluku islands in Indonesia and used as a spice in cuisines all over the world.

Cloves are harvested primarily in Indonesia, India, Madagascar, Zanzibar, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka.

The clove tree is an evergreen that grows to a height ranging from 8–12 m, having large leaves and sanguine flowers in numerous groups of terminal clusters.

The flower buds are at first of a pale color and gradually become green, after which they develop into a bright red, when they are ready for collecting.

Cloves are harvested when 1.5–2 cm long, and consist of a long calyx, terminating in four spreading sepals, and four unopened petals which form a small ball in the center.

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Coriander Herb

Coriander Herb

Coriander (Coriandrum sativum) is an annual herb in the family Apiaceae. Coriander Herbs are also known as cilantro, particularly in the Americas.

Coriander Herbs is native to southwestern Asia and west to North Africa. These herb seeds is a soft, hairless plant growing to 50 cm 20 in tall.

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Alisma

Alisma

Alisma is a genus of flowering plants in the family Alismataceae, members of which are commonly known as water-plantains. The genus consists of aquatic plants with leaves either floating or submerged, found in a variety of still water habitats around the world (nearly worldwide).

The flowers are hermaphrodite, and are arranged in panicles, racemes, or umbels. Alisma flowers have six stamens, numerous free carpels in a single whorl, each with 1 ovule, and subventral styles. The fruit is an achene with a short beak.

 

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Puff Ball

Puff Ball

A puffball is a member of any of several groups of fungus in the division Basidiomycota. The puffballs were previously treated as a taxonomic group called the Gasteromycetes or Gasteromycetidae, but they are now known to be a polyphyletic assemblage.

The distinguishing feature of all puffballs is that they do not have an open cap with spore-bearing gills. Instead, spores are produced internally, in a spheroidal fruiting body called a gasterothecium (gasteroid (‘stomach-like’) basidiocarp).

As the spores mature, they form a mass called a gleba in the centre of the fruiting body that is often of a distinctive color and texture.

The basidiocarp remains closed until after the spores have been released from the basidia. Eventually, it develops an aperture, or dries, becomes brittle, and splits, and the spores escape.

The spores of puffballs are statismospores rather than ballistospores, meaning they are not actively shot off the basidium. The fungi are called ‘puffballs’ because clouds of brown dust-like spores are emitted when the mature fruiting body bursts, or in response to impacts such as those of falling raindrops.

Puffballs and similar forms are thought to have evolved repeatedly (that is, in numerous independent events) from hymenomycetes by gasteromycetation, through secotioid stages.

Thus, ‘Gasteromycetes’ and ‘Gasteromycetidae’ are now considered to be descriptive, morphological terms (more properly gasteroid or gasteromycetes, to avoid taxonomic implications) but not valid cladistic terms.

Puffballs encompass the genera Calvatia, Calbovista and Lycoperdon.The true puffballs, of the Lycoperdales, do not consist of a visible stalk (stem).

The stalked puffballs, of the lycoperdales, do have a stalk which supports the gleba. None of the stalked puffballs are edible as they are tough and woody mushrooms.

The Hymenogastrales are the false puffballs. A gleba which is powdery on maturity is a feature of true puffballs, stalked puffballs and earthstars.

False puffballs are hard like rock or brittle. All false puffballs are inedible, as they are tough and bitter to taste. The genus Scleroderma, which has a young purple gleba, should also be avoided.

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