The leaves and shoots of flowering plants are acrid, astringent and vasodilator. It is used internally in the treatment of high blood pressure, gout, varicose veins, chilblains, radiation damage etc. It is best used in conjunction with vitamin C since this aids absorption. Often combined with lime flowers (Tilia species), it is a specific treatment for haemorrhage into the retina. The leaves and flowering stems are harvested as the plant begins to flower and are dried for later use. They should be stored in the dark because the active ingredients rapidly degrade in the light. Some caution should be exercised in the use of this herb because it has been known to cause light-sensitive dermatitis. A poultice made from the seeds has been used for restoring the flow of milk in nursing mothers. An infusion of the herb has been used in the treatment of erysipelas (an acute infectious skin disease).A homeopathic remedy has been made from the leaves. It is used in the treatment of eczema and liver disorders.
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Buckwheat is frequently cultivated for its edible seed and leaves, it can produce a seed crop in 100 days from sowing and a crop of leaves in 8 weeks. There are some named varieties. The seed ripens irregularly over a period of several weeks so it is difficult to harvest. Plants have poor frost resistance but they are disease and insect resistant. They inhibit the growth of winter wheat.The flowers have a pleasant sweet honey scent and are extremely attractive to bees and hoverflies.
Problems, pests & diseases
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