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Plants And Their Uses - Health - Nairaland

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Five Common Nigerian Home Remedies And Their Uses / Nigerian Local Names Of Some Plants. / Top Herbs And Their Uses (1) (2) (3) (4)

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Plants And Their Uses by Epi: 1:44am On Oct 31, 2009

The Aloe vera plant has been used for thousands of years to heal a variety of conditions, most notably burns, wounds, skin irritations, and constipation. It is grown in most subtropical and tropical locations, including South Africa, Latin America, and the Caribbean. Aloe was one of the most frequently prescribed medicines throughout most of the 18th and 19th centuries and it remains one of the most commonly used herbs in the United States today. However, oral use of aloe for constipation is no longer recommended, as it can have severe side effects.


For over 3,500 years, tales of "healing Aloe Vera" plants have been handed down through centuries by word of mouth. From the Bible's mention of removing Christ from the cross and wrapping his body in aloes and myrrh, (John 19:39), we find Aloe Vera mysteriously appearing in every phase of history, with many testimonials to its great medicinal values. The earliest documented use of Aloe Vera comes from the ancient Egyptians, but it was also grown and used by King Solomon, who was said to have valued it highly.

Alexander the Great conquered the island of Socotra in order to have the Aloe for his army. During his fabled travels in the Orient, among the many marvels recorded by Marco Polo were his descriptions of the many applications of the Aloe Vera plant. The Spanish Conquistadors discovered various herbal medicines in use in Tenochtitlán. At the heart of many of the Aztec cures, it is known that Aloe Vera was the effective agent. These Aztec herbal medicines were transported back to Europe by the Spanish, during the sixteenth century, where they became the foundation for modern Western medicine.

Re: Plants And Their Uses by Epi: 4:20am On Oct 31, 2009

Ferns are a very ancient family of plants: early fern fossils predate the beginning of the Mesozoic era, 360 million years ago. They are older than land animals and far older than the dinosaurs. They were thriving on Earth for two hundred million years before the flowering plants evolved.

As we know them now, most ferns are leafy plants that grow in moist areas under forest canopy. They are "vascular plants" with well-developed internal vein structures that promote the flow of water and nutrients. Unlike the other vascular plants, the flowering plants and conifers, where the adult plant grows immediately from the seed, ferns reproduce from spores and an intermediate plant stage called a gametophyte.

Ferns are also use for decorative and ornamental purposes, because they keep well in water. In the United States, fronds of the species Polystichum acrostichoides are sold during the Christmas season, because they maintain their green color even during the winter months. This species is aptly called the Christmas Fern. When added with other flowers, ferns can create unique floral arrangements. The fronds of various ferns are dried and spray-painted. Gold or silver paint adds beautiful, decorative color to floral patterns. The inner trunk of tree ferns can be cut and shaped into ornamental artwork such as vases, cups, or bowls.

In nature, ferns serve a far greater purpose to the environment. In particular those species that are weedy or that can thrive in disturbed soil. Ferns help aid in erosion control and soil stabilization. The main structures of ferns, which perform these tasks are the rhizomes and the root systems. The rhizomes, because they are thin, long and grow horizontally beneath the surface of the ground, help to stabilize the soil. The root systems of ferns are well branched and add moisture to soil, helping to preventing erosion.

Re: Plants And Their Uses by Epi: 4:17am On Nov 01, 2009

The Latin name for yarrow is Achillea millefolium and is a tribute to one of the oldest legends surrounding this well-known plant. Achillea refers to the Greek hero Achilles who used the plant to heal his soldiers during the Trojan War. It is said that he learned the herb lore surrounding yarrow from his tutor Chiron the centaur.

Its use as a remedy for war wounds is reflected in many of its common names including soldier’s woundwort. Its use on the battlefield lasted until the Civil War where the crushed plant was often applied to bullet and shrapnel wounds since the plant was supposed to be particularly effective for healing wounds caused by iron weapons.

Yarrow is touted for its numerous therapeutic qualities. Its botanical name is derived from Achilles, the Greek hero. This herb needs to be planted in a sunny location in average, well-drained soil. It grows up to two feet in height. Other than yarrow, this plant is also known by the names of woundwort, staunch-weed and knight’s milfoil.

Many people don’t realize that yarrow can be used in cooking. The young leaves are said to be very nutritious and can be used in salads. It has also been used in the brewing of beer instead of rose hops.

Yarrow has endless medicinal properties. When made into a tea, which is used from the entire plant, it has a powerful effect on the immune system. It is also used to reduce fevers, as a blood purifier, as a method to combat depression and kidney disorders to name a few. It is advised to drink yarrow tea in moderation as a person can suffer from the side effects if yarrow is used too frequently.

Yarrow has also been used as a cool wash for chapped hands and when applied to the face, it can rid the pores of excess oil. To make the wash, you need to brew the yarrow in a tea and leave it to cool. If yarrow tea is used too frequently, the skin will become sensitive to light, so use with caution.

Re: Plants And Their Uses by SeanT21(f): 5:09am On Nov 01, 2009
Good Info
Re: Plants And Their Uses by Epi: 2:09pm On Nov 01, 2009

Thought to be the sweetest fruit, figs are also one of the oldest fruits recognized by man. It's no wonder the fig has been enjoyed for centuries. Its sweet, delicious flesh, long used as a sweetener before the advent of refined sugars, enhances both savory dishes and desserts. Not to worry if you don't have access to fresh figs. Dried figs are readily available

The first named plant of the Bible other than the Tree of Life and the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. Adam and Eve used its leaves to sew garments when they realized they were Unclad. The fig tree was mentioned prominently in The Bible (some scholars believe the forbidden fruit picked by Eve was a fig rather than an apple), but it has been around much, much longer. Sumerian stone tablets dating back to 2500 B.C. record the usage of figs.

The fig is believed to be indigenous to Western Asia and to have been distributed by man throughout the Mediterranean area. It has been cultivated for thousands of years, remnants of figs having been found in excavations of Neolithic sites traced to at least 5,000 B.C. As time went on, the fig-growing territory stretched from Afghanistan to southern Germany and the Canary Islands. Pliny was aware of 29 types. Figs were introduced into England some time between 1525 and 1548. It is not clear when the common fig entered China but by 1550 it was reliably reported to be in Chinese gardens. European types were taken to China, Japan, India, South Africa and Australia.

Cooked figs were used as sweeteners in lieu of sugar in historical times, and this usage still continues today in North Africa and the Middle East. High in potassium, iron, fiber and plant calcium, figs are also used for medicinal purposes as a diuretic and laxative.

The fig tree can live as long as 100 years and grow to 100 feet tall, although domestic trees are kept pruned to a height of about 16 feet.

Re: Plants And Their Uses by IFELEKE(m): 2:20pm On Nov 01, 2009
Nice work Epi. . .Kudos
Re: Plants And Their Uses by Epi: 2:41am On Nov 02, 2009
^ kiss^



The olive is an evergreen tree with thick-skinned, small and extended leaves.Their upper side is dark green and shiny and their underside is silver colored.

During the summer months and until December, the olive fruit grows and ripens and during this process its color changes from green to purple and to black. Of the approximately 100 plants mentioned in the Bible, the olive tree is probably the most sacred and recognized. It was part of the livelihood of the ancient peoples, serving as food, lamp oil, anointing oil, and building material.

Olives are grown mainly for the production of olive oil. Fresh, unprocessed olives are inedible because of their extreme bitterness resulting from a glucoside that can be neutralized by treatments with a dilute alkali such as lye. Salt applications also dispel some of the bitterness. The processed fruit may be eaten either ripe or green. The olive fruit and its oil are key elements in the cuisine of the Mediterranean and popular outside the region.

Olive oil is classified into five grades: (1) virgin, from first pressings that meet defined standards; (2) pure, or edible, a mixture of refined and virgin; (3) refined, or commercial, consisting of lampante from which acid, colour, and odour have been removed; (4) lampante, high-acid oil, named for its use as a lamp fuel, obtained from a second pressing of residual pulp with hot water (some inferior virgin oils are classed as lampante); (5) sulfide, extracted with solvents and refined repeatedly.

In the late 20th century, Spain and Italy were the world leaders in commercial olive production, with more than a quarter each of the world’s total followed by Greece, with more than a 10th. Other important olive-producing countries are Turkey, Tunisia, Morocco, Syria, and Portugal. Europe, with nearly 500 million olive trees, has more than three-quarters of the world’s cultivated olives, followed by Asia (about 13 percent).

Re: Plants And Their Uses by Epi: 2:31am On Nov 03, 2009
^ wink


Originating from the Americas, the cocoa bean enriches life throughout the world today. Its real value was probably first discovered by the Aztecs in Central America and was used as means for payment as well as the ingredient for a powerful "drink of gods". It wasn't until the beginning of the 16th century that cocoa was brought into Europe during the initial visit of Columbus to the "new world". Although the Spanish tried to keep this developing cocoa and chocolate industry to themselves, this new "taste' quickly found its way to the rich and wealthy of other countries

Cocoa beans are the seeds of the fruit or 'pod' of the cocoa tree. The cocoa tree grows in the warmest regions on earth within 20 degrees north and south of the Equator. They can be classified in groups according to its geographic origin as well as characteristics, value and application;
- (West) Africa
- Central and South America
- Asia/Oceania
Approximately 60% of world production originates from Africa, mainly produced within a network of small farms and cooperatives.

Cocoa  seeds are processed into cocoa powder for use mainly to make chocolate  and cocoa butter. Cocoa pulp can be eaten fresh or made into cocoa juice.  Besides its use as a food, scientists  discovered cocoa is beneficial for health. Cocoa has twice the anti-cancer antioxidants of red wine, and up to three times those found in green tea

Re: Plants And Their Uses by ifyalways(f): 8:00pm On Nov 03, 2009
Cool @ Epi
the water stops/controls bleeding.
Chewing on it helps control blood sugar level.
when boiled with water and taken,it helps in the treatment of high fever.
Re: Plants And Their Uses by preselect(m): 12:13am On Nov 04, 2009
ify, which one helps with . . . you know . . . .you know . . . . . you know what i mean cheesy
Re: Plants And Their Uses by Epi: 2:36am On Nov 04, 2009
Hi Ifi:

Could you please post a picture of the bitterleaf. I know of a bitterleaf for cleansing/increase appetite. Looks like bay leaf and taste like senna

Re: Plants And Their Uses by Epi: 2:39am On Nov 04, 2009

Hibiscus is a popular plant whose flowers are found in numerous herbal tea preparations. The flowers contribute color and a pleasant taste to beverages. In normal concentrations, the teas would not be expected to exert any pharmacologic action.  Hibiscus is native to tropical Africa but today grows throughout many tropical climates. This strong annual herb grows to 5 feet or more and produces elegant red flowers. The flowers (calyx and bract portions) are collected when slightly immature.

The hibiscus has had a long history of use in Africa and neighboring tropical countries. Its fragrant flowers have been used in sachets and perfumes. Fiber from H. sabdariffa has been used to fashion rope as a jute substitute and the fleshy red calyx is used in the preparation of teas, drinks, jams and jellies, and the leaves have been used like spinach. The plant is used widely in Egypt for the treatment of cardiac and nerve diseases and has been described as a diuretic. It has been used in the treatment of cancers. The mucilagenous leaves are used as a topical emollient in Africa. In western countries, hibiscus flowers are often found as components of herbal tea mixtures. The leaves and calyxes have been used as food and the flowers steeped for tea. Hibiscus has been used in folk medicine as a diuretic, mild laxative and treatment for cardiac and nerve diseases and cancer.

Re: Plants And Their Uses by Epi: 10:29pm On Nov 04, 2009

A pomegranate is a fruit the size of a large orange. The leathery reddish-pink skin shelters the membranous walls and bitter tissue that house compartments or sacs filled with hundreds of seeds. A translucent red pulp that has a slightly sweet and tart taste surrounds these seeds.

Health Benefits:
Pomegranate has gained a great deal of popularity over the years. Originally from the Middle East and Asia, the pomegranate fruit is also known by the name Granada or the Chinese apple. These days, the fruit is mostly grown is India, Africa and the United States. The pomegranate fruit is very large and contains seeds with juicy coating. The fruit grows during the summer and towards winter, turns red and ripens

Pomegranate provides:

a great source of potassium
more antioxidants compared to other juices and even wine!
vitamin B and Vitamin C
great source of fiber
helps prevent heart disease
keeps your immune system in top notch conditions
prevents buildup of material in your arteries

Home remedies with pomegranate

1) The peel of the fruit should be dried and powdered and taken in doses of 5-10 gms, twice or thrice a day, in cases of hyper-acidity, diarrhea and low appetite.

2) Powdered peel mixed with salt can be used toothpowder.

3) For parasitic infestations like tapeworm etc., decoction of the root, 10-20 gm should be taken followed by a purgative.

4) This fruit is beneficial for dry coughs also.

5) Intake of fresh fruit juice provides relief in urinary disorders.

6) Include this fruit in your diet when you are suffering from fevers.

7) The juice of this fruit can be used to wash wounds and ulcers.

cool For throat and other oral afflictions, gargling with the decoction of this fruit peel helps.

Re: Plants And Their Uses by preselect(m): 11:26pm On Nov 05, 2009
epi, ur picture fine o grin

1 Like

Re: Plants And Their Uses by waka2: 7:47pm On Jul 26, 2014
[color=#006600][/color]pls Any Herb For Treatment Of Migraine Pls Your Reply Would Be Highly Appriciatd.
Re: Plants And Their Uses by adeoladrg(m): 1:08pm On Jul 27, 2014
I never knew Hibiscus was a medicinal plant.
Re: Plants And Their Uses by b3llo(m): 6:13pm On Jul 27, 2014
Re: Plants And Their Uses by stardragon(m): 9:24pm On Jul 27, 2014
Oga i dey o
Re: Plants And Their Uses by Alima2(f): 6:39pm On Oct 29, 2014
I never knew Hibiscus was a medicinal plant.

it is popular known as Zobo
Re: Plants And Their Uses by LizNaira: 6:49pm On Oct 29, 2014
Aloe Vera is also great when you want to lighten your skin or gain it's elasticity. It known as a fountain of youth. Read more http://littleladyhealth.blogspot.com/2014/10/10-natural-ways-to-lighten-your-skin.html
Re: Plants And Their Uses by Job5050: 5:48pm On Aug 21, 2015

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