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Useful Temperate Plants

Beta vulgaris maritima

(L.) Arcang.

Amaranthaceae

+ Synonyms

Beta atriplicifolia Rouy

Beta bengalensis Roxb.

Beta maritima L.

Beta orientalis L.

Common Name: Sea Beet

Beta vulgaris maritima
Plant growing in native habitat
Photograph by: Rmrony
Creative Commons License
Beta vulgaris maritima Beta vulgaris maritima

General Information

Beta vulgaris maritima is an annual to biennial or perennial plant, of very varied habit, growing 30 - 120cm tall from a stout rootstock[
17
Title
Flora of the British Isles.
Publication
 
Author
Clapham, Tutin and Warburg.
Publisher
Cambridge University Press
Year
1962
ISBN
-
Description
A very comprehensive flora, the standard reference book but it has no pictures.
].
The plant is often harvested from the wild for local use as a food and sometimes also as a medicine. This plant is the wild ancestor of various cultivated forms including the beetroot, chards and sugar beet.

Known Hazards

None known

Botanical References

17
Title
Flora of the British Isles.
Publication
 
Author
Clapham, Tutin and Warburg.
Publisher
Cambridge University Press
Year
1962
ISBN
-
Description
A very comprehensive flora, the standard reference book but it has no pictures.
,
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.

Range

Coastal areas of Eurasia from Sweden south to Spain, east to Turkey, the Levant and Azerbaijan; Macaronesia; N. Africa - Morocco to Egypt

Habitat

Banks and shingle by the coast[
5
Title
Food for Free.
Publication
 
Author
Mabey. R.
Publisher
Collins
Year
1974
ISBN
0-00-219060-5
Description
Edible wild plants found in Britain. Fairly comprehensive, very few pictures and rather optimistic on the desirability of some of the plants.
].

Properties

Edibility Rating *  *
Medicinal Rating *  *
HabitAnnual/Perennial
Height0.50 m
PollinatorsWind
Cultivation StatusWild

Cultivation Details


Grows best in an open position and a light well-drained soil[
52
Title
Salads all the Year Round.
Publication
 
Author
Larkcom. J.
Publisher
Hamlyn
Year
1980
ISBN
 
Description
A good and comprehensive guide to temperate salad plants, with full organic details of cultivation.
]. Usually found in saline soils.

Edible Uses

Young leaves - raw or cooked[
5
Title
Food for Free.
Publication
 
Author
Mabey. R.
Publisher
Collins
Year
1974
ISBN
0-00-219060-5
Description
Edible wild plants found in Britain. Fairly comprehensive, very few pictures and rather optimistic on the desirability of some of the plants.
,
12
Title
Britain's Wild Larder.
Publication
 
Author
Loewenfeld. C. and Back. P.
Publisher
David & Charles; Newton Abbot.
Year
 
ISBN
0-7153-7971-2
Description
A handy pocket guide.
,
16
Title
New Vegetable Growers Handbook.
Publication
 
Author
Simons.
Publisher
Penguin
Year
1977
ISBN
0-14-046-050-0
Description
A good guide to growing vegetables in temperate areas, not entirely organic.
,
21
Title
The Herb Book.
Publication
 
Author
Lust. J.
Publisher
Bantam books
Year
1983
ISBN
0-553-23827-2
Description
Lots of information tightly crammed into a fairly small book.
]. A delicious spinach substitute in the spring, the leaves become less pleasant as the season progresses, developing a distinct bitterness in hot weather[
K
Title
Plants for a Future
Author
Ken Fern
Description
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
]. Some people dislike the raw leaves since they can leave an unpleasant taste in the mouth[
K
Title
Plants for a Future
Author
Ken Fern
Description
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
].

Medicinal

Although little used in modern herbalism, the plant has a long history of folk use, especially in the treatment of tumours[
269
Title
Handbook of Energy Crops
Publication
 
Author
Duke. J.
Publisher
-
Year
1983
ISBN
-
Description
Published only on the Internet, excellent information on a wide range of both temperate and tropical plants.
]. Beet juice was formerly recommended as a remedy for anaemia and yellow jaundice, and was put into the nostrils to purge the head, used as ear drops to clear ringing ears, and as a mouthwash to alleviate toothache[
269
Title
Handbook of Energy Crops
Publication
 
Author
Duke. J.
Publisher
-
Year
1983
ISBN
-
Description
Published only on the Internet, excellent information on a wide range of both temperate and tropical plants.
].

The root is carminative, emmenagogue, haemostatic, stomachic and is used as a tonic for women[
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.
]. The root can be used as part of the diet, or the juice can be extracted and used as a health-promoting drink[
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.
]. At least one litre of the juice from red-rooted forms must be taken each day in order to stimulate the immune system[
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 juice is prescribed by herbalists as part of a cancer-treatment regime[
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 root of white-rooted forms contain betaine which has been shown to promote the regeneration of liver cells and the metabolism of fat cells[
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.
,
269
Title
Handbook of Energy Crops
Publication
 
Author
Duke. J.
Publisher
-
Year
1983
ISBN
-
Description
Published only on the Internet, excellent information on a wide range of both temperate and tropical plants.
].
The root of red-rooted forms contains betanin - an anthocyanin similar to those found in red wine. It has been shown to be partly responsible for red beet's immune-enhancing effect[
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.
].

A decoction prepared from the seed has been used as a remedy for tumours of the intestines. The seed, boiled in water, is said to cure genital tumours[
269
Title
Handbook of Energy Crops
Publication
 
Author
Duke. J.
Publisher
-
Year
1983
ISBN
-
Description
Published only on the Internet, excellent information on a wide range of both temperate and tropical plants.
].

The juice or other parts of the plant is said to help in the treatment of tumours, leukaemia and other forms of cancer such as cancer of the breast, oesophagus, glands, head, intestines, leg, lip, lung, prostate, rectum, spleen, stomach, and uterus[
269
Title
Handbook of Energy Crops
Publication
 
Author
Duke. J.
Publisher
-
Year
1983
ISBN
-
Description
Published only on the Internet, excellent information on a wide range of both temperate and tropical plants.
].
The juice has been applied topically to treat ulcers[
269
Title
Handbook of Energy Crops
Publication
 
Author
Duke. J.
Publisher
-
Year
1983
ISBN
-
Description
Published only on the Internet, excellent information on a wide range of both temperate and tropical plants.
].
Beet juice in vinegar is said to rid the scalp of dandruff, and has been recommended to prevent falling hair[
269
Title
Handbook of Energy Crops
Publication
 
Author
Duke. J.
Publisher
-
Year
1983
ISBN
-
Description
Published only on the Internet, excellent information on a wide range of both temperate and tropical plants.
].

A decoction is used as a purgative by those who suffer from haemorrhoids in South Africa[
269
Title
Handbook of Energy Crops
Publication
 
Author
Duke. J.
Publisher
-
Year
1983
ISBN
-
Description
Published only on the Internet, excellent information on a wide range of both temperate and tropical plants.
].

Other Uses

None known

Propagation

Seed - sow early to late spring in situ.
Cite as: Temperate Plants Database, Ken Fern. temperate.theferns.info. 2018-10-18. <temperate.theferns.info/plant/Beta+vulgaris+maritima>

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