This article has been marked as incomplete and in need of reformatting. Please help us to improve it.

Practical Plants is a community wiki. You can edit this page to improve the quality of the information it contains. To learn how, please read the editing guide.

Uses

Toxic parts

Although no specific mention has been seen for this species, it belongs to a genus where most, if not all members of the genus produce hydrogen cyanide, a poison that gives almonds their characteristic flavour. This toxin is found mainly in the leaves and seed and is readily detected by its bitter taste. It is usually present in too small a quantity to do any harm but any very bitter seed or fruit should not be eaten. In small quantities, hydrogen cyanide has been shown to stimulate respiration and improve digestion, it is also claimed to be of benefit in the treatment of cancer. In excess, however, it can cause respiratory failure and even death.

Edible uses

Notes

The fruit might be edible[1]. The fruits of all members of this genus are more or less edible, though not always of very good quality[K]. However, if the fruit is bitter it should not be eaten in any quantity due to the presence of toxic compounds, see the notes above on toxicity[K]. The fruit is about 6mm in diameter and contains one large seed[2]. Seed - raw or cooked. The dried seed kernels are used as a flavouring in breads, sweet pastries, confectionery etc[1][3]. They impart an intriguing flavour[3]. Do not eat the seed if it is too bitter - see the notes above on toxicity.

Fruit

Material uses

A green dye can be obtained from the leaves[4].

A dark grey to green dye can be obtained from the fruit[4]. Can be used as a rootstock for the cultivated cherries[5][6].

Wood - hard, very heavy, polishes well. Used for turnery, ornamental items etc[7][8].

Unknown part

Medicinal uses(Warning!)

The seed is tonic[9]. Although no specific mention has been seen for this species, all members of the genus contain amygdalin and prunasin, substances which break down in water to form hydrocyanic acid (cyanide or prussic acid). In small amounts this exceedingly poisonous compound stimulates respiration, improves digestion and gives a sense of well-being[10].

Unknown part

Ecology

Ecosystem niche/layer

Canopy or Secondary canopy

Ecological Functions

Rootstock

Forage

Nothing listed.

Shelter

Nothing listed.

Propagation

Seed - requires 2 - 3 months cold stratification and is best sown in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe[2]. Sow stored seed in a cold frame as early in the year as possible[2]. Protect the seed from mice etc. The seed can be rather slow, sometimes taking 18 months to germinate[11]. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle. Grow them on in a greenhouse or cold frame for their first winter and plant them out in late spring or early summer of the following year.

Cuttings of half-ripe wood with a heel, July/August in a frame[6][2]. Softwood cuttings from strongly growing plants in spring to early summer in a frame[2].

Layering in spring.

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



Cultivation

Thrives in a well-drained moisture-retentive loamy soil[6][2], growing best in a poor soil[5][6]. Prefers some lime in the soil but is likely to become chlorotic if too much lime is present[5]. Succeeds in sun or partial shade though it fruits better in a sunny position[6][2].

Most members of this genus are shallow-rooted and will produce suckers if the roots are damaged[10].

Plants in this genus are notably susceptible to honey fungus[2].

Crops

Problems, pests & diseases

Associations & Interactions

There are no interactions listed for Prunus mahaleb. 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 Prunus mahaleb.

Descendants

Cultivars

Varieties

None listed.

Subspecies

None listed.

Full Data

This table shows all the data stored for this plant.

Taxonomy
Binomial name
Prunus mahaleb
Genus
Prunus
Family
Rosaceae
Imported References
Edible uses
Medicinal uses
Material uses & Functions
Botanic
Propagation
Cultivation
Environment
Cultivation
Uses
Edible uses
  • Fruit (Unknown use)
  • Seed (Unknown use)
Material uses
  • Unknown part (Dye)
  • Unknown part (Wood)
Medicinal uses
  • Unknown part (Tonic)
Functions & Nature
Functions
Provides forage for
Provides shelter for
Environment
Hardiness Zone
5
Heat Zone
?
Water
moderate
Sun
full sun
Shade
light shade
Soil PH
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
    Root Zone Tendancy
    None listed.
    Life
    Deciduous or Evergreen
    Herbaceous or Woody
    Life Cycle
    Growth Rate
    ?
    Mature Size
    9 x 9 meters
    Fertility
    ?
    Pollinators
    Flower Colour
    ?
    Flower Type











    References

    1. ? 1.01.11.2 Kunkel. G. Plants for Human Consumption. Koeltz Scientific Books ISBN 3874292169 (1984-00-00)
    2. ? 2.02.12.22.32.42.52.62.72.82.9 Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992. MacMillan Press ISBN 0-333-47494-5 (1992-00-00)
    3. ? 3.03.13.2 Facciola. S. Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants. Kampong Publications ISBN 0-9628087-0-9 (1990-00-00)
    4. ? 4.04.14.2 Grae. I. Nature's Colors - Dyes from Plants. MacMillan Publishing Co. New York. ISBN 0-02-544950-8 (1974-00-00)
    5. ? 5.05.15.25.3 F. Chittendon. RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956 Oxford University Press (1951-00-00)
    6. ? 6.06.16.26.36.46.56.6 Bean. W. Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement. Murray (1981-00-00)
    7. ? 7.07.1 Uphof. J. C. Th. Dictionary of Economic Plants. Weinheim (1959-00-00)
    8. ? 8.08.1 Usher. G. A Dictionary of Plants Used by Man. Constable ISBN 0094579202 (1974-00-00)
    9. ? 9.09.1 Chopra. R. N., Nayar. S. L. and Chopra. I. C. Glossary of Indian Medicinal Plants (Including the Supplement). Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, New Delhi. (1986-00-00)
    10. ? 10.010.110.2 Bown. D. Encyclopaedia of Herbs and their Uses. Dorling Kindersley, London. ISBN 0-7513-020-31 (1995-00-00)
    11. ? Dirr. M. A. and Heuser. M. W. The Reference Manual of Woody Plant Propagation. Athens Ga. Varsity Press ISBN 0942375009 (1987-00-00)
    12. ? ? Flora Europaea Cambridge University Press (1964-00-00)