Herb: Hairy Manzanita
Latin name: Arctostaphylos columbiana
Synonyms: Arctostaphylos tomentosa
Family: Ericaceae (Heath Family)
Medicinal use of Hairy Manzanita:A decoction of the bark is used in the treatment of diarrhoea.
Description of the plant:
Habitat of the herb:Near the coast.
Edible parts of Hairy Manzanita:Fruit - raw or cooked. The fruit is best harvested when slightly under-ripe since the fully mature pulp is mealy. The fruit is about 8mm in diameter.
Other uses of the herb:A yellowish-brown dye is obtained from the leaves, it does not require a mordant. The wood burns with a bright light and so was used at dances and ceremonials by the native North American Indians. The wood is hard and is used for making tools and awl handles.
Propagation of Hairy Manzanita:Seed - best sown in a greenhouse as soon as it is ripe. Pre-soak dried seed in boiling water for 10 - 20 seconds or burn some straw on top of them and then stratify at 2 - 5°C for 2 months. The seed usually germinates in 2 - 3 months at 15°C. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a greenhouse or cold frame for at least their first winter, Plant out in late spring or early summer. Cuttings of side shoots of the current season's growth, 5 - 8cm with a heel, August to December in a frame. Takes one year. Division in early spring. Take care because the plant resents root disturbance. Pot the divisions up and keep them in a lightly shaded position in a cold frame or greenhouse until they are growing away actively. Layering in spring. Layering in spring.
Cultivation of the herb:Near the coast.
Known hazards of Arctostaphylos columbiana:None known
Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.