Herb: Giant Vetch
Latin name: Vicia gigantea
Synonyms: Vicia nigricans gigantea
Medicinal use of Giant Vetch:The roots are laxative. An infusion of the roots has been used as a tonic hair wash and anti-dandruff treatment.
Description of the plant:
(3 1/4 foot)
Habitat of the herb:Moist places in California, especially in redwood forests.
Edible parts of Giant Vetch:Young seed - raw or cooked. The seeds are produced in pods 2 - 5cm long, each pod containing 3 - 4 round seeds the size of small peas. They are eaten, when young, like green peas, the flavour even of young seeds is rather strong, like old garden peas. Some native North American Indian tribes regarded the seeds as poisonous, though other tribes would eat them as a snack. The pods were harvested when green and then roasted in an open fire until the pods started to split open. The seeds were then removed and eaten.
Other uses of the herb:An infusion of the roots has been used as a tonic hair wash and anti-dandruff treatment.
Propagation of Giant Vetch:Pre-soak the seed for 24 hours in warm water and then sow in situ in spring or autumn.
Cultivation of the herb:Moist places in California, especially in redwood forests.
Known hazards of Vicia gigantea:None known
Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.