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Securinega suffruticosa - (Pall.)Rehder.

Author(Pall.)Rehder. Botanical references11, 58
FamilyEuphorbiaceae GenusSecurinega
SynonymsPharnaceum suffruticosum - Pall.
Securinega ramiflora - (Aiton.)Muell.-Arg.
Xylophylla ramiflora - Aiton.
Known HazardsNone known
RangeE. Asia - Japan.
HabitatThickets and grassy slopes in C. and S. Japan[58].
Edibility Ratingapple icon 1 (1-5) Medicinal Ratingapple iconapple iconapple icon 3 (1-5)

Physical Characteristics

icon of man icon of shrub A decidious Shrub growing to 1.5m.
It is hardy to zone 0. It is in flower from August to September, and the seeds ripen from September to October. The flowers are dioecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but only one sex is to be found on any one plant so both male and female plants must be grown if seed is required)The plant is not self-fertile.

The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It requires moist soil.

Habitats

Woodland Garden; Sunny Edge; Dappled Shade; Shady Edge;

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Fruit; Leaves.

Young budlings, dried and steeped in water[105]. (Does this refer to the leaf buds or the flower buds?) Fruit[105, 177]. No further details are given.

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.

This plant is commonly used in Chinese herbalism, where it is considered to be one of the 50 fundamental herbs[218]. It is used in the treatment of contusions and nervous paralysis[218]. The plant contains securinine, this acts as a stimulant on the central nervous system - it is particularly useful in the treatment of facial paralysis and is also thought to be of value in the treatment of multiple sclerosis[218].

Other Uses

None known

Cultivation details

Succeeds in any rich loamy soil in a sunny position[1, 182]. Dioecious. Male and female plants must be grown if seed is required.

Propagation

Seed - we have no information for this species but would suggest sowing the seed as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame. It should germinate freely in spring[K]. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, July/August in sand in a frame[1].

Links

References

[K] Ken Fern
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.

[1] F. Chittendon. RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956 Oxford University Press 1951
Comprehensive listing of species and how to grow them. Somewhat outdated, it has been replaces in 1992 by a new dictionary (see [200]).

[11] Bean. W. Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement. Murray 1981
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.

[58] Ohwi. G. Flora of Japan. (English translation) Smithsonian Institution 1965
The standard work. Brilliant, but not for the casual reader.

[105] Tanaka. T. Tanaka's Cyclopaedia of Edible Plants of the World. Keigaku Publishing 1976
The most comprehensive guide to edible plants I've come across. Only the briefest entry for each species, though, and some of the entries are more than a little dubious. Not for the casual reader.

[177] Kunkel. G. Plants for Human Consumption. Koeltz Scientific Books 1984 ISBN 3874292169
An excellent book for the dedicated. A comprehensive listing of latin names with a brief list of edible parts.

[182] Thomas. G. S. Ornamental Shrubs, Climbers and Bamboos. Murray 1992 ISBN 0-7195-5043-2
Contains a wide range of plants with a brief description, mainly of their ornamental value but also usually of cultivation details and varieties.

[218] Duke. J. A. and Ayensu. E. S. Medicinal Plants of China Reference Publications, Inc. 1985 ISBN 0-917256-20-4
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.

Readers Comments

Plants for a Future does not verify the accuracy of reader comments, use at your own risk. In particular Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. You should always consult a professional before using plants medicinally.

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