Herb: Gunnera


Latin name: Gunnera tinctoria


Synonyms: Gunnera chilensis, Gunnera scabra


Family: Gunneraceae (Gunnera Family)



Medicinal use of Gunnera:

The whole plant is astringent.

Description of the plant:



Plant:
Perennial


Height:
2 m
(6 1/2 foot)

Flovering:
July to
August

Habitat of the herb:

Moist soils by lakes and rivers of the Central Provinces.

Edible parts of Gunnera:

Young leaf stalks - peeled and cooked as a vegetable or eaten raw. Acid and refreshing.

Other uses of the herb:

A black dye is obtained from the root. The root contains 9% tannin. Leaves are used as a roof covering.

Propagation of Gunnera:

Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in the autumn in a sandy mix in a cold frame. The seed can also be sown in a shady position in a greenhouse in the spring. Germination usually takes place within 2 - 8 weeks at 15C. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Division as new growth commences in the spring. The clumps can be planted out direct into their permanent positions.

Cultivation of the herb:

Moist soils by lakes and rivers of the Central Provinces.

Known hazards of Gunnera tinctoria:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.