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Uses

Toxic parts

The whole plant is highly toxic, acting especially on the nerve centres. At first it stimulates the central and peripheral nervous system and then paralyzes it. Other symptoms of poisoning include a burning sensation on the tongue, vomiting, stomach pain and diarrhoea. Simple skin contact with the plant has caused numbness in some people[1][2][3][4][5][6][7][8][9]. The root contains 90% more poison than the leaves[10].

Edible uses

Notes

Some reports suggest the root is edible if cooked[11][12], but these should be treated with extreme caution due to the highly toxic nature of the plant[K].
There are no edible uses listed for Aconitum napellus.

Material uses

There are no material uses listed for Aconitum napellus.

Medicinal uses(Warning!)

Aconite has been used since ancient times, especially as an antidote to poisoning[9]. Since the entire plant is itself very toxic, however, any use should be under the guidance of a skilled practitioner[1]. All parts of the plant are used medicinally. The root is the most important and this is harvested as soon as the plant dies down in the autumn and is dried before use[1]. The other parts of the plant are less important and are used fresh, being harvested when the plant is coming into flower[1].

The root is analgesic, anodyne, antirheumatic, diaphoretic, diuretic, irritant and sedative[1][2][3][13][14]. Due to its poisonous nature, it is not normally used internally though it has been used in the treatment of fevers[14]. Externally, it is applied to unbroken skin in the treatment of rheumatism, painful bruises, neuralgia etc[14][15].

All parts of the plant, except the root, are harvested when the plant is in flower and used to make a homeopathic medicine[10]. This is analgesic and sedative and is used especially in the treatment of fevers, inflammation, bronchitis, neuralgia etc[3][10].

Ecology

Ecosystem niche/layer

Ecological Functions

Nothing listed.

Forage

Nothing listed.

Shelter

Nothing listed.

Propagation

Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame[16]. The seed can be stratified and sown in spring but will then be slow to germinate[17]. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a cold frame for their first winter. Plant them out in late spring or early summer. Division - best done in spring but it can also be done in autumn[18][16]. Another report says that division is best carried out in the autumn or late winter because the plants come into growth very early in the year[19].

Practical Plants is currently lacking information on propagation instructions of Aconitum napellus. Help us fill in the blanks! Edit this page to add your knowledge.



Cultivation

Thrives in most soils and in the light shade of trees[18]. Grows well in heavy clay soils. Prefers a moist soil in sun or semi-shade[14]. Plants only thrive in a sunny position if the soil remains moist throughout the growing season[20]. Prefers a calcareous soil. Tolerates a pH in the range 4.5 to 7.5.

Plants take 2 - 3 years to flower when grown from seed[9]. Grows well in open woodlands[18][1]. The flowers are very attractive to bees[9]. Members of this genus seem to be immune to the predations of rabbits and deer[19]. Although the plant is a perennial, individual roots only live for one year and die after flowering. Each root produces a number of 'daughter' roots before it dies and these can be used for propagating the plant[1]. A greedy plant, inhibiting the growth of nearby species, especially legumes[21].

An aggregate species which is divided by some botanists into many species[22][8].

Crops

Problems, pests & diseases

Associations & Interactions

There are no interactions listed for Aconitum napellus. Do you know of an interaction that should be listed here? edit this page to add it.

Polycultures & Guilds

There are no polycultures listed which include Aconitum napellus.

Descendants

Cultivars

Varieties

None listed.

Subspecies

None listed.

Full Data

This table shows all the data stored for this plant.

Taxonomy
Binomial name
Aconitum napellus
Genus
Aconitum
Family
Ranunculaceae
Imported References
Edible uses
Material uses & Functions
Botanic
Propagation
Cultivation
Environment
Cultivation
Uses
Edible uses
None listed.
Material uses
None listed.
Medicinal uses
None listed.
Functions & Nature
Functions
Provides forage for
Provides shelter for
Environment
Hardiness Zone
6
Heat Zone
?
Water
moderate
Sun
full sun
Shade
light shade
Soil Texture
Soil Water Retention
Environmental Tolerances
    Ecosystems
    Native Climate Zones
    None listed.
    Adapted Climate Zones
    None listed.
    Native Geographical Range
    None listed.
    Native Environment
    None listed.
    Ecosystem Niche
    None listed.
    Root Zone Tendancy
    None listed.
    Life
    Deciduous or Evergreen
    ?
    Herbaceous or Woody
    ?
    Life Cycle
    Growth Rate
    ?
    Mature Size
    Fertility
    ?
    Pollinators
    Flower Colour
    ?
    Flower Type

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    References

    1. ? 1.01.11.21.31.41.51.61.7 Grieve. A Modern Herbal. Penguin ISBN 0-14-046-440-9 (1984-00-00)
    2. ? 2.02.12.2 Chiej. R. Encyclopaedia of Medicinal Plants. MacDonald ISBN 0-356-10541-5 (1984-00-00)
    3. ? 3.03.13.23.3 Launert. E. Edible and Medicinal Plants. Hamlyn ISBN 0-600-37216-2 (1981-00-00)
    4. ? Altmann. H. Poisonous Plants and Animals. Chatto and Windus ISBN 0-7011-2526-8 (1980-00-00)
    5. ? Holtom. J. and Hylton. W. Complete Guide to Herbs. Rodale Press ISBN 0-87857-262-7 (1979-00-00)
    6. ? Stary. F. Poisonous Plants. Hamlyn ISBN 0-600-35666-3 (1983-00-00)
    7. ? Frohne. D. and Pf?nder. J. A Colour Atlas of Poisonous Plants. Wolfe ISBN 0723408394 (1984-00-00)
    8. ? 8.08.1 Cooper. M. and Johnson. A. Poisonous Plants in Britain and their Effects on Animals and Man. HMSO ISBN 0112425291 (1984-00-00)
    9. ? 9.09.19.29.39.4 Phillips. R. & Foy. N. Herbs Pan Books Ltd. London. ISBN 0-330-30725-8 (1990-00-00)
    10. ? 10.010.110.210.3 Castro. M. The Complete Homeopathy Handbook. Macmillan. London. ISBN 0-333-55581-3 (1990-00-00)
    11. ? 11.011.1 Hedrick. U. P. Sturtevant's Edible Plants of the World. Dover Publications ISBN 0-486-20459-6 (1972-00-00)
    12. ? 12.012.1 Kunkel. G. Plants for Human Consumption. Koeltz Scientific Books ISBN 3874292169 (1984-00-00)
    13. ? 13.013.1 Mills. S. Y. The Dictionary of Modern Herbalism. ()
    14. ? 14.014.114.214.314.414.5 Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992. MacMillan Press ISBN 0-333-47494-5 (1992-00-00)
    15. ? 15.015.1 Chevallier. A. The Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants Dorling Kindersley. London ISBN 9-780751-303148 (1996-00-00)
    16. ? 16.016.1 Sanders. T. W. Popular Hardy Perennials. Collingridge (1926-00-00)
    17. ? Rice. G. (Editor) Growing from Seed. Volume 1. Thompson and Morgan. (1987-00-00)
    18. ? 18.018.118.2 F. Chittendon. RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956 Oxford University Press (1951-00-00)
    19. ? 19.019.1 Thomas. G. S. Perennial Garden Plants J. M. Dent & Sons, London. ISBN 0 460 86048 8 (1990-00-00)
    20. ? Bown. D. Encyclopaedia of Herbs and their Uses. Dorling Kindersley, London. ISBN 0-7513-020-31 (1995-00-00)
    21. ? Hatfield. A. W. How to Enjoy your Weeds. Frederick Muller Ltd ISBN 0-584-10141-4 (1977-00-00)
    22. ? 22.022.1 Clapham, Tootin and Warburg. Flora of the British Isles. Cambridge University Press (1962-00-00)

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    Facts about "Aconitum napellus"RDF feed
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    Article requires citationsNo +
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    Belongs to genusAconitum +
    Has binomial nameAconitum napellus +
    Has common nameAconite +
    Has drought toleranceIntolerant +
    Has fertility typeBees +
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    Has hardiness zone6 +
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    Has lifecycle typePerennial +
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    Has medicinal useAnalgesic +, Anodyne +, Antirheumatic +, Diaphoretic +, Diuretic +, Febrifuge +, Homeopathy +, Irritant + and Sedative +
    Has primary imageBlauer Eisenhut Dolomiten.jpg +
    Has search nameaconitum napellus + and aconite +
    Has shade toleranceLight shade +
    Has soil ph preferenceVery acid +, Acid +, Neutral +, Alkaline + and Very alkaline +
    Has soil texture preferenceSandy +, Loamy +, Clay + and Heavy clay +
    Has sun preferenceFull sun +
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    Has water requirementsmoderate +
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    PFAF toxicity notes migratedNo +
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    Uses mature size measurement unitMeters +
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