Herb: Aubergine


Latin name: Solanum melongena


Family: Solanaceae (Nightshade Family, Potato Family)



Medicinal use of Aubergine:

The aubergine is used mainly as a food crop, but it does also have various medicinal uses that make it a valuable addition to the diet. In particular the fruit helps to lower blood cholesterol levels and is suitable as part of a diet to help regulate high blood pressure. The fruit is antihaemorrhoidal and hypotensive. It is also used as an antidote to poisonous mushrooms. It is bruised with vinegar and used as a poultice for cracked nipples, abscesses and haemorrhoids. The leaves are narcotic. A decoction is applied to discharging sores and internal haemorrhages. A soothing and emollient poultice for the treatment of burns, abscesses, cold sores and similar conditions can be made from the leaves. Aubergine leaves are toxic and should only be used externally. The ashes of the peduncle are used in the treatment of intestinal haemorrhages, piles and toothache. A decoction of the root is astringent.

Description of the plant:



Plant:
Perennial


Height:
100 cm
(3 1/4 foot)

Flovering:
July to
September

Habitat of the herb:

Not known in the wild.

Edible parts of Aubergine:

Fruit - raw or cooked. The fruit should not be eaten raw. It can be baked, stewed or added to soups, curries etc. The fruit is said to be very nutritious. It is a good source of vitamin C and potassium. The fruit can be up to 20cm long in cultivated plants. Leaves - mixed with rice bran and salt in which "Daikon" (a form of radish ) roots have been pickled. Caution is advised, see the notes on toxicity above.

Propagation of the herb:

Seed - sow early spring in a warm greenhouse with a minimum temperature of 15C. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots once they are large enough to handle and grow them on fast. If growing them outdoors, plant out after the last expected frosts.

Cultivation of Aubergine:

Not known in the wild.

Known hazards of Solanum melongena:

All green parts of the plant are poisonous.

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.