Herb latin name: Polygonum nepalense


Synonyms: Persicaria nepalense


Family: Polygonaceae (Buckwheat Family)



Medicinal use of Polygonum nepalense:

A juice of the root is used in the treatment of fevers. A paste of the root is used as a poultice on fresh wounds.

Description of the plant:



Plant:
Annual


Height:
30 cm
(11 3/4 inch)

Flovering:
June to
September

Habitat of the herb:

Usually common in damp shaded situations, 1700 - 2000 metres in Srinagar. Damp woods in mountains all over Japan. Exposed rocky slopes, 1200 - 4000 metres in Nepal.

Edible parts of Polygonum nepalense:

Tender young leaves and shots - raw or cooked as a vegetable. Seed - raw or cooked. It is rather small and fiddly to utilize.

Other uses of the herb:

The squeezed plant is used for washing clothes.

Propagation of Polygonum nepalense:

Seed - sow spring in a cold frame. Germination is usually free and easy. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in the summer if they have reached sufficient size. If not, overwinter them in a cold frame and plant them out the following spring after the last expected frosts.

Cultivation of the herb:

Usually common in damp shaded situations, 1700 - 2000 metres in Srinagar. Damp woods in mountains all over Japan. Exposed rocky slopes, 1200 - 4000 metres in Nepal.

Known hazards of Polygonum nepalense:

Although no specific mention has been made for this species, there have been reports that some members of this genus can cause photosensitivity in susceptible people. Many species also contain oxalic acid (the distinctive lemony flavour of sorrel) - whilst not toxic this substance can bind up other minerals making them unavailable to the body and leading to mineral deficiency. Having said that, a number of common foods such as sorrel and rhubarb contain oxalic acid and the leaves of most members of this genus are nutritious and beneficial to eat in moderate quantities. Cooking the leaves will reduce their content of oxalic acid. People with a tendency to rheumatism, arthritis, gout, kidney stones or hyperacidity should take especial caution if including this plant in their diet since it can aggravate their condition.

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.