Herb: Big-Leaf Lupin


Latin name: Lupinus polyphyllus


Family: Leguminosae



Medicinal use of Big-Leaf Lupin:

A decoction of the plant has been used as a tonic.

Description of the plant:



Plant:
Perennial


Height:
150 cm
(5 feet)

Flovering:
July to
August

Habitat of the herb:

Usually found in wetlands from sea level to 3000 metres.

Edible parts of Big-Leaf Lupin:

Root - raw or cooked.1

Propagation of the herb:

Pre-soak the seed for 24 hours in warm water and then sow in early spring in a greenhouse. Germination should take place within a couple of weeks. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in the summer. It should also be possible to sow the seed in situ in mid spring. It might be necessary to protect the sowing from mice. Division in March. Difficult. Basal cuttings, April in a cold frame. Harvest the shoots when they are about 10cm long with plenty of underground stem. Pot them up into individual pots and keep them in light shade in a cold frame or greenhouse until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the summer.

Cultivation of Big-Leaf Lupin:

Usually found in wetlands from sea level to 3000 metres.

Known hazards of Lupinus polyphyllus:

The seed of many lupin species contain bitter-tasting toxic alkaloids, though there are often sweet varieties within that species that are completely wholesome. Taste is a very clear indicator. These toxic alkaloids can be leeched out of the seed by soaking it overnight and discarding the soak water. It may also be necessary to change the water once during cooking. Fungal toxins also readily invade the crushed seed and can cause chronic illness.

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.