Herb: False Huckleberry


Latin name: Menziesia ferruginea


Family: Ericaceae (Heath Family)



Medicinal use of False Huckleberry:

The leaves are cardiac. They have been chewed to relieve heart pain and treat stomach problems. A poultice of the heated leaves has been applied to sores and swellings.

Description of the plant:



Plant:
Deciduous
Shrub

Height:
180 cm
(6 feet)

Flovering:
May to
June

Habitat of the herb:

Woodland shade below 300 metres in California.

Edible parts of False Huckleberry:

Fruit - fresh or dried. The fruit is about 5 - 7mm in diameter. The nectar has been sucked from the flowers to sweeten the mouth.

Propagation of the herb:

Seed - best sown in a shady position in a cold frame in the autumn but it can also be sown in late winter . Surface sow and do not allow the compost to become dry. Germination is variable and can take 1 - 2 months at 15C. Keep the seedlings heavily shaded and prick them out into individual pots when they are 12 months old. Plant them out into their permanent positions in the summer once they are more than 15cm tall. Cuttings of semi-ripe wood, 2 - 5cm with a heel, May/June in a frame. Keep them shaded. The cuttings are very slow to root but usually a good percentage will succeed. Division in early spring just before active growth begins. Layering.

Cultivation of False Huckleberry:

Woodland shade below 300 metres in California.

Known hazards of Menziesia ferruginea:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.