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Virginia Creeper – Parthenocissus quinquefolia

Virginia Creeper – Parthenocissus quinquefolia

Virginia creeper, five-leaved ivy, or five-finger (Parthenocissus quinquefolia) is a woody vine native to eastern and central North America, in southeastern Canada, the eastern and central United States, eastern Mexico, and Guatemala, west as far as Manitoba, South Dakota, Utah and Texas.

A woody, dedicuous vine, Virginia Creeper can be high-climbing or trailing, 3-40 ft.; the structure on which it climbs is the limiting factor. Virginia Creeper climbs by means of tendrils with disks that fasten onto bark or rock.

Its leaves, with 5 leaflets, occasionally 3 or 7, radiating from the tip of the petiole, coarsely toothed, with a pointed tip, and tapered to the base, up to 6 inches long.

Leaves provide early fall color, turning brilliant mauve, red and purple. Inconspicuous flowers small, greenish, in clusters, appearing in spring. Fruit bluish, about 1/4 inch in diameter.

Virginia Creeper can be used as a climbing vine or ground cover, its leaves carpeting any surface in luxuriant green before turning brilliant colors in the fall.

Its tendrils end in adhesive-like tips, giving this vine the ability to cement itself to walls and therefore need no support. The presence of adhesive tips instead of penetrating rootlets also means it doesnt damage buildings the way some vines do. It is one of the earliest vines to color in the fall. A vigorous grower, it tolerates most soils and climatic conditions.

In years past, children learned a rhyme to help distinguish Virginia Creeper from the somewhat similar-looking and highly toxic Poison Ivy (Toxicodendron radicans): Leaves of three, let it be; Leaves of five, let it thrive.

Poison Ivy leaflets are normally in groups of three, while those of Virginia Creeper are in groups of five.

The berries of Virginia Creeper can be harmful if ingested, however, and the rest of the plant contains raphides, which irritate the skin of some people.

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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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Boswellia Serrata

Boswellia Serrata

English name: Olibanum, Frankincense

Sanskrit name: Sallaki

Family: Burseraceae

Part used: Gum

Traditional uses: The gum is credited with astringent, stimulant, expectorant, diuretic, diaphoretic, antipyretic, stomachic, emmenagogue and antiseptic properties.

It is reported to be useful in ulcers, tumours, goitre. It is used in the preparation of an ointment for sores and is used with butter in syphilis.

The gum resin is sweet, bitter, astringent, antipyretic, antidysenteric, expectorant, diaphoretic, diuretic, stomachic, and emmenagogue.

It is useful in fevers, diaphoresis, convulsions, dysentery, urethrorrhea, orchiopathy, bronchitis, asthma, cough, stomatitis, syphilitic diseases, chronic laryngitis, jaundice and arthritis.

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