Herb latin name: Astragalus hamosus


Family: Leguminosae



Medicinal use of Astragalus hamosus:

The plant is demulcent, emollient, galactogogue and laxative. It is useful in treating irritation of the mucous membranes, nervous affections and catarrh.

Description of the plant:



Plant:
Annual


Height:
60 cm
(2 feet)

Flovering:
May to
July

Habitat of the herb:

Dry grassland. Semidesert areas in foothills and the low montane belt, on clay, loess, sand and rock debris.

Edible parts of Astragalus hamosus:

Young seedpods - cooked. They quickly become tough and fibrous. The young seedpods are also used in salads. They have only a mediocre taste, but look very much like certain worms and so are used mainly for their novelty value.

Propagation of the herb:

Seed - sow late winter in a greenhouse. Pre-soak the seed for 24 hours in warm water. If any seed does not swell up in this time then carefully prick it with a needle making sure that you do not damage the embryo, and re-soak for a further 24 hours. Germination usually takes place within 3 - 6 weeks at 13C. As soon as it is large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in early summer.

Cultivation of Astragalus hamosus:

Dry grassland. Semidesert areas in foothills and the low montane belt, on clay, loess, sand and rock debris.

Known hazards of Astragalus hamosus:

Many members of this genus contain toxic glycosides. All species with edible seedpods can be distinguished by their fleshy round or oval seedpod that looks somewhat like a greengage. A number of species can also accumulate toxic levels of selenium when grown in soils that are relatively rich in that element.

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.