Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Mimosapudica

Plant talk

Recommended Posts

I'm new to this forum so it's still a bit 'scary' to post here, since you don't know me yet and I don't know you...

So I thought; why not start my own topic and see if people respond ;)

 

I would like to discuss plants, since this is a topic that I'm interested in and would like to know more about.

I will start by writing a bit about a certain plant and hopefully learn something in the process of writing and at the same time share what I have learned with you.

If anyone would like to share something about plants (this could be just informative or a personal experience with a plant) I would like that, if not, that's fine too offcourse.

 

I will start with 'Tropaeolum majus', commonly known as Nasturtium.

Nasturtium may not be the obvious choice to start off with, but they've been on my mind a lot lately.

I have always liked the appearence of the plant, somehow it seems to breathe out some of the energy of the 1970's... an Era just before 'my time' (born in 1981) which I could feel waning as a child, a time that somehow made me feel at home.

Recently I stumbled upon the name of the plant, bought some seeds and planted them in the earth.

To be honest I am not very familiar with this plant, I don't think I even ever tasted it, but yet the description of the taste seems familiar, so I'm very excited to try them once they have grown enough.

 

Nasturtium is actually not the real name of this plant... Nasturtium is a genus in the brassica family, one of the plants in this genus is watercress (Nasturtium officinale).

The reason that Tropaeolum majus is called nasturtium is that they taste a lot alike (or so I read...)

Another common name for Tropaeolum majus is 'Indian cress', or in Dutch 'Oost-Indische kers' (East-Indian cress), which is also an incorrect name because Tropaeolum came from the Andes in South America (must have something to do with colonialism).

Cress, again, comes from watercress... so double incorrect ;)

 

Since I haven't had any direct contact with this plant yet I can't tell you what my associations are with Tropaeolum, so I looked up the magical properties.

I especially liked this:

 

"Nasturtium: Banishing Prejudice and Supporting Tolerance, Choosing to Create Your Own Reality, Creativity, Freedom, Independence and Creating Your Own Archetype, Protection, Releasing Fear of New Situations"

Source:https://tesswhitehurst.com/the-magical-and-metaphysical-properties-of-flowers/

 

Tropaeolum majus somehow seems to reflect some of the energy of the 70's to my idea as I wrote before... and in the description above there are some properties that remind me of the values of the 70's; young people who wanted to do things differently from previous generations, they wanted to create a better place for everyone, without discrimination where people could live in harmony with their natural surroundings and be who they felt they should be.

 

It is said that on hot summer days, when darkness is creeping in, sparks of light can be seen coming from the flowers of the Tropaeolum, due to phosphoric acid in the flowers heart...

I will defenitly try to observe this phenomenon, when 'my' plants start to flower!

 

According to a Dutch book about herbs which I own (Kruidenwijsheid, by Marjanne Huising) you can keep the picked leaves fresh in vinegar during the winter, according to this book the leaves will lose their healing powers when they are dried.

 

The plant contains a lot of vitamin C and is a Good aid against blather infections because of it's antibacterial constitution and good for the respiratory system because of it's antiviral and antifungal properties, it also helps resolve slime and helps with digestion.

These are only some of the properties of the plant that I've read about on various websites.

For those who would like to know more about it's medicinal uses there are many sources on the internet among which this one: https://www.webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-526/nasturtium

 

Tropaeolum is also a very useful plant in the vegetable garden, it lures away aphids from other plants, attracts beneficial insects and pollinators and deters pests.

 

Iam looking forward to connecting with this plant and to harvest some of it's leaves and flowers for medicinal and culinary purposes!

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I do not know much about it. My mother use it in salads and other, says there are plenty of luthein in them what suppose to be very healthy :)

Edited by Mona

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Its' super easy to grow from seed and can be planted as soon as the soil is workable. I have some already coming up in pots outside. A cheerful flower!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you for sharing. My mother grew this when I was growing up, we used to eat it straight from the garden. I had forgotten about it. I will try to find some seeds and plant them. I'm very drawn to all things plants, so thank you for sharing this. I look forward to learning more.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nasturtium seeds arrived in my local library's seed packet through the mail this week :) Also Calendula. I love flowers that I can eat! I'm a super-pragmatic gardener, and it's rare that I will purchase or plant something to grow that I can't use to eat or for medicine in some way. So I was pleased to receive these flower seeds!

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for your comments :)

Today two tiny seedlings emerged from the earth where I planted the seeds, I'm happy they came up so soon.

I too just grow plants that serve a purpose except from just being pleasant to look at.

I really like the idea of permaculture, where every plant has a distinct (or often even more then one) function and benefits from it's neighboring plants.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pickled nasturtium seeds can be pickled and they are similar to capers.  I have not tried them yet but I love capers.  I grow nasturtiums every year, I get the mixed color variety and edge all my flower beds with them.  They add color in with the greens of the vegetables and they seem to keep the bugs away too.  I saved some of the seeds from last year, we will see if they are viable.  If I have an empty spot. I fling in a pkt. of Nasturtiums.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tagetes Lucida (Mexican Tarragon).

 

Once more a herb from the American continent with which I have no previous aquintance, but which I have just sown in my garden.

Funny because in the last years I have been more interested in plants that are native to my area.

I learned about this herb only very recently.

There’s this book by Josie Jeffery about companion planting (link), a subject that I find very interesting.

The book has a “split page mix and match system” that allows you to easily see which plants will grow well together.

Anyway, in this book I read about a plant called 'Tagetes Minuta'.

This plant has some properties that could have had a positive interaction with other plants that I am growing, so I went online to look for it and found some information but couldn't find any seeds.

I did however find seeds from Tagetes Lucida, I was curious about this plant so I looked it up and found out that not only is it a useful culinary herb with medicinal properties, but also a witching/shamanic herb which can have a mind altering effect, it can induce visions and enhance dreams.

It has a broad history of use in religious ceremony.

The Inca's used Tagetes in an incense that they used as an offering in rituals.

In Mexican witchcraft (Bujeria), Tagetes Lucida in combination with other herbs is used in ceremonial healing rites known as limpias (purifications).

These are just two examples of how Tagetes Lucida was/is being used for spiritual purposes, if you want to learn more you can read this interesting article, which is my source for the above information: http://entheology.com/plants/tagetes-lucida-marigolds/

 

Apart from being a plant with mind altering properties, Tagetes Lucida is also used as a culinary herb, it's taste is similar to that of Tarragon, hence the name Mexican Tarragon, although the taste has also been described as 'Anise like'.

It is used for flavoring soups, sauces etc., it is also drank as tea.

Other uses are as a dyeing plant (yellow) and to repel insects (source: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tagetes-lucida).

I even read somewhere that it is possible to make an insect reppelent balm for the skin which also helps with insect bites.

According to a Dutch website that sells the seeds, the mind altering effects dissappear when the herb is cooked (I think dosage and the way of ingestion are also important factors).

About the medicinal properties:

"Medicinal use of Mexican Tarragon: The leaves and whole plant are digestive, diuretic, febrifuge, hypotensive, narcotic, sedative and stimulant. Use of the plant depresses the central nervous system, whilst it is also reputedly anaesthetic and hallucinogenic. It is used internally in the treatment of diarrhoea, nausea, indigestion, colic, hiccups, malaria and feverish illnesses. Externally, it is used to treat scorpion bites and to remove ticks. The leaves can be harvested and used as required, whilst the whole plant is harvested when in flower and dried for later use"

This quote came from: http://www.naturalmedicinalherbs.net/herbs/t/tagetes-lucida=mexican-tarragon.php

 

What I like about this plant is that it is very versatile, it can be used in many ways.

It's too bad that it's not hardy in the climate zone where I live, it is gtown as an annual around here.

Hopefully it will grow back next year if I allow it to seed (which I intend to do).

 

At our house we have already renamed the plant 'Mexican dragon herb' ('Mexicaans draken kruid' in Dutch), because in the Netherlands it is reffered to as 'Mexicaanse dragon'; dragon is French for Tarragon and in the Dutch language we also use this word.

Off course we are familiar with the meaning of the word dragon in English and even if it's pronounced differently, we just like the sound of it.

I think the association with the mystical creature somehow suits the plant, but that's just me off course ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...