By indexer
179 days ago

Greater celandine

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The greater celandine (Chelidonium majus) is a confusing plant because it has no botanical relationship to the lesser celandine (Ranunculus ficaria) but is in fact a member of the poppy family. According to Pedanius Dioscorides, a Roman army surgeon from the 1st century BC, the plant derives its name from the Greek for swallow, because mother swallows used its sap to cure blindness in young swallows – either that, or it simply flowered at the time that swallows arrived for the summer. The latter explanation seems more likely!

The greater celandine grows on banks and walls and in hedgerows, and is common throughout the British Isles except for northern Scotland. It is also widely distributed in other parts of the world.

It grows up to 36 inches (90 centimetres) high. The leaves grow on stems and have rounded leaflets, the leaf at the end of each stem having three lobes. The leaves are hairless and are blue-green on the underside. The yellow flowers, which have four petals, grow in clusters and each flower is up to an inch across. Flowering time is from May to September.

The seed pods are long and slender and open from the bottom up when the seeds are ripe. The seeds are coated with an oily film that is attractive to ants. They feed on the oil and then carry away the seeds that stick to their bodies until they are rubbed off at a distance from the parent plant.

The greater celandine was used in ancient China for medicinal purposes, as its orange-coloured sap was found to be effective for burning away corns and warts. There is an echo of the swallow story mentioned above in that it was also used to cure sore eyes, but, as they say in all official health warnings, please do not try this at home!
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Justin β€Ί πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘
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soncee β€Ί Very nice artikle
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Deliana β€Ί Very useful plant to treat a variety of health conditions.
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