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Useful Temperate Plants

Ammi visnaga

(L.) Lam.

Apiaceae

+ Synonyms

Ammi dilatatum St.-Lag.

Apium visnaga (L.) Crantz

Carum visnaga (L.) Koso-Pol.

Daucus gingidium L. ex DC.

Daucus laevis Salisb.

Daucus visnaga L.

Selinum visnaga Krause

Sium visnaga (L.) Stokes

Visnaga daucoides Gaertn.

Visnaga vera Raf.

Common Name: Visnaga

Ammi visnaga
Flowering stems
Photograph by: Dwight Sipler
Creative Commons License
Ammi visnaga Ammi visnaga Ammi visnaga Ammi visnaga Ammi visnaga Ammi visnaga

General Information

Ammi visnaga is an erect annual to biennial plant with a much-branched stem; it can grow up to 1 metre tall[
1064
Title
WHO Monographs on Selected Medicinal Plants Vol. 3
Publication
 
Author
 
Publisher
World Health Organization; Geneva
Year
2007
ISBN
978-92-4-154702-4
Description
Very detailed treatments of 31 medicinal herbs
].
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a medicine, food and source of materials. It is often cultivated commercially for the pharmaceutical industry as a source of 'khellin', which is used in various medications, especially in the treatment of asthma. The fruiting pedicels are sold as toothpicks in Egyptian markets[
46
Title
Dictionary of Economic Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Uphof. J. C. Th.
Publisher
Weinheim
Year
1959
ISBN
-
Description
An excellent and very comprehensive guide but it only gives very short descriptions of the uses without any details of how to utilize the plants. Not for the casual reader.
].

Known Hazards

Skin contact with the sap is said to cause photo-sensitivity and/or dermatitis in some people[
218
Title
Medicinal Plants of China
Publication
 
Author
Duke. J. A. and Ayensu. E. S.
Publisher
Reference Publications, Inc.
Year
1985
ISBN
0-917256-20-4
Description
Details of over 1,200 medicinal plants of China and brief details of their uses. Often includes an analysis, or at least a list of constituents. Heavy going if you are not into the subject.
].

Botanical References

1
Title
RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956
Publication
 
Author
F. Chittendon.
Publisher
Oxford University Press
Year
1951
ISBN
-
Description
Comprehensive listing of species and how to grow them. Somewhat outdated, it has been replaced in 1992 by a new dictionary (see [200]).
,
50
Title
Flora Europaea
Publication
 
Author
?
Publisher
Cambridge University Press
Year
1964
ISBN
-
Description
An immense work in 6 volumes (including the index). The standard reference flora for Europe, it is very terse though and with very little extra information. Not for the casual reader.

Range

Southern Europe - Portugal, Spain, France, Italy, Albania, Greece; N. Africa - Morocco to Egypt, W. Asia - Turkey to Israel, east to Iran

Habitat

Fields and sandy places[
100
Title
Flowers of Europe - A Field Guide.
Publication
 
Author
Polunin. O.
Publisher
Oxford University Press
Year
1969
ISBN
0192176218
Description
An excellent and well illustrated pocket guide for those with very large pockets. Also gives some details on plant uses.
].

Properties

Edibility Rating *  *
Medicinal Rating *  *  *  *
Other Uses Rating *  *  *
HabitAnnual/Biennial
Height0.75 m
PollinatorsInsects
Self-fertileYes
Cultivation StatusWild

Cultivation Details

Ammi visnaga is not fully winter-hardy outside the milder areas of the temperate zone, though it should be possible to grow it in most regions as a spring-sown annual[
238
Title
Encyclopaedia of Herbs and their Uses.
Publication
 
Author
Bown. D.
Publisher
Dorling Kindersley, London.
Year
1995
ISBN
0-7513-020-31
Description
A very well presented and informative book on herbs from around the globe. Plenty in it for both the casual reader and the serious student. Just one main quibble is the silly way of having two separate entries for each plant.
].
Prefers a well-drained soil in a sunny position[
238
Title
Encyclopaedia of Herbs and their Uses.
Publication
 
Author
Bown. D.
Publisher
Dorling Kindersley, London.
Year
1995
ISBN
0-7513-020-31
Description
A very well presented and informative book on herbs from around the globe. Plenty in it for both the casual reader and the serious student. Just one main quibble is the silly way of having two separate entries for each plant.
], succeeding in ordinary garden soil. Tolerates a pH in the range 6.8 to 8.3.

Edible Uses

Leaves - raw[
177
Title
Plants for Human Consumption.
Publication
 
Author
Kunkel. G.
Publisher
Koeltz Scientific Books
Year
1984
ISBN
3874292169
Description
An excellent book for the dedicated. A comprehensive listing of Latin names with a brief list of edible parts.
]. Chewed for their pleasant aromatic flavour[
183
Title
Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Facciola. S.
Publisher
Kampong Publications
Year
1990
ISBN
0-9628087-0-9
Description
Excellent. Contains a very wide range of conventional and unconventional food plants (including tropical) and where they can be obtained (mainly N. American nurseries but also research institutes and a lot of other nurseries from around the world.
].

Medicinal

Visnaga is an effective muscle relaxant and has been used for centuries to alleviate the excruciating pain of kidney stones[
254
Title
The Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants
Publication
 
Author
Chevallier. A.
Publisher
Dorling Kindersley. London
Year
1996
ISBN
9-780751-303148
Description
An excellent guide to over 500 of the more well known medicinal herbs from around the world.
]. Modern research has confirmed the validity of this traditional use[
254
Title
The Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants
Publication
 
Author
Chevallier. A.
Publisher
Dorling Kindersley. London
Year
1996
ISBN
9-780751-303148
Description
An excellent guide to over 500 of the more well known medicinal herbs from around the world.
].
Visnagin contains khellin, from which particularly safe pharmaceutical drugs for the treatment of asthma have been made[
254
Title
The Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants
Publication
 
Author
Chevallier. A.
Publisher
Dorling Kindersley. London
Year
1996
ISBN
9-780751-303148
Description
An excellent guide to over 500 of the more well known medicinal herbs from around the world.
]. Khellin is commercially available in tablets and injection - it is a potent selective coronary vasodilator and bronchodilator and is used in the treatment of coronary insufficiency, angina pectoris, bronchial asthma, vitiligo and psoriasis, and for the removal of small bladder and kidney stones[
1059
Title
A Guide to Medicinal Plants in North Africa
Publication
 
Author
 
Publisher
IUCN; Malaga, Spain
Year
2005
ISBN
2-8317-0893-1
Description
A guide to over 100 species of medicinal herbs in N. Africa.
].

The seeds are diuretic, emmenagogue and lithontripic[
46
Title
Dictionary of Economic Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Uphof. J. C. Th.
Publisher
Weinheim
Year
1959
ISBN
-
Description
An excellent and very comprehensive guide but it only gives very short descriptions of the uses without any details of how to utilize the plants. Not for the casual reader.
,
1064
Title
WHO Monographs on Selected Medicinal Plants Vol. 3
Publication
 
Author
 
Publisher
World Health Organization; Geneva
Year
2007
ISBN
978-92-4-154702-4
Description
Very detailed treatments of 31 medicinal herbs
]. They contain a fatty oil that includes the substance 'khellin'. This has been shown to be of benefit in the treatment of asthma[
238
Title
Encyclopaedia of Herbs and their Uses.
Publication
 
Author
Bown. D.
Publisher
Dorling Kindersley, London.
Year
1995
ISBN
0-7513-020-31
Description
A very well presented and informative book on herbs from around the globe. Plenty in it for both the casual reader and the serious student. Just one main quibble is the silly way of having two separate entries for each plant.
]. Taken internally, the seeds have a strongly antispasmodic action on the smaller bronchial muscles[
254
Title
The Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants
Publication
 
Author
Chevallier. A.
Publisher
Dorling Kindersley. London
Year
1996
ISBN
9-780751-303148
Description
An excellent guide to over 500 of the more well known medicinal herbs from around the world.
], they also dilate the bronchial, urinary and blood vessels without affecting blood pressure[
238
Title
Encyclopaedia of Herbs and their Uses.
Publication
 
Author
Bown. D.
Publisher
Dorling Kindersley, London.
Year
1995
ISBN
0-7513-020-31
Description
A very well presented and informative book on herbs from around the globe. Plenty in it for both the casual reader and the serious student. Just one main quibble is the silly way of having two separate entries for each plant.
]. The affect last for about 6 hours and the plant has practically no side effects[
254
Title
The Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants
Publication
 
Author
Chevallier. A.
Publisher
Dorling Kindersley. London
Year
1996
ISBN
9-780751-303148
Description
An excellent guide to over 500 of the more well known medicinal herbs from around the world.
]. The seeds are used in the treatment of asthma, angina, coronary arteriosclerosis and kidney stones[
238
Title
Encyclopaedia of Herbs and their Uses.
Publication
 
Author
Bown. D.
Publisher
Dorling Kindersley, London.
Year
1995
ISBN
0-7513-020-31
Description
A very well presented and informative book on herbs from around the globe. Plenty in it for both the casual reader and the serious student. Just one main quibble is the silly way of having two separate entries for each plant.
]. By relaxing the muscles of the urethra, visnaga reduces the pain caused by trapped kidney stones and helps ease the stone down into the bladder[
254
Title
The Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants
Publication
 
Author
Chevallier. A.
Publisher
Dorling Kindersley. London
Year
1996
ISBN
9-780751-303148
Description
An excellent guide to over 500 of the more well known medicinal herbs from around the world.
].
The seeds are harvested in late summer before they have fully ripened and are dried for later use[
254
Title
The Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants
Publication
 
Author
Chevallier. A.
Publisher
Dorling Kindersley. London
Year
1996
ISBN
9-780751-303148
Description
An excellent guide to over 500 of the more well known medicinal herbs from around the world.
].

Other Uses

The fruiting pedicel is used as a toothpick[
46
Title
Dictionary of Economic Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Uphof. J. C. Th.
Publisher
Weinheim
Year
1959
ISBN
-
Description
An excellent and very comprehensive guide but it only gives very short descriptions of the uses without any details of how to utilize the plants. Not for the casual reader.
,
61
Title
A Dictionary of Plants Used by Man.
Publication
 
Author
Usher. G.
Publisher
Constable
Year
1974
ISBN
0094579202
Description
Forget the sexist title, this is one of the best books on the subject. Lists a very extensive range of useful plants from around the world with very brief details of the uses. Not for the casual reader.
,
114
Title
The Plant Wealth of Iraq.
Publication
 
Author
Chakravarty. H. L.
Publisher
 
Year
 
ISBN
 
Description
It is surprising how many of these plants can be grown in Britain. A very readable book on the useful plants of Iraq.
] whilst the seeds have been used as a tooth cleaner[
254
Title
The Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants
Publication
 
Author
Chevallier. A.
Publisher
Dorling Kindersley. London
Year
1996
ISBN
9-780751-303148
Description
An excellent guide to over 500 of the more well known medicinal herbs from around the world.
].

Propagation

Seed - sow in situ. In mild-winter areas the plant is usually sown in the autumn, but can be sown in the spring in areas with cold winters.

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