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Uses

Toxic parts

Although we have found no reports of toxicity for this species, a number of ferns contain carcinogens so some caution is advisable[1]. Many ferns also contain thiaminase, an enzyme that robs the body of its vitamin B complex. In small quantities this enzyme will do no harm to people eating an adequate diet that is rich in vitamin B, though large quantities can cause severe health problems. The enzyme is destroyed by heat or thorough drying, so cooking the plant will remove the thiaminase[2].

Edible uses

Notes

The young unexpanded fronds are eaten as a nibble or cooked in soups[3][4][5][6][7][8][9]. The taste is said to resemble asparagus[1]. The young shoots are seen as a 'spring tonic' to cleanse the body with fresh green food after a long winter eating mainly stored foods[9]. The latent buds can be eaten in early spring, they rival chestnuts in size and flavour[10].

Leaves

Material uses

There are no material uses listed for Osmunda cinnamomea.

Medicinal uses(Warning!)

A decoction of the root has been rubbed into affected joints as a treatment for rheumatism[9]. The root has been chewed, a small portion swallowed and the remainder applied to a snakebite[9].

The following reports do not state which part of the plant is being used, though it is most likely that the root is being referred to.

The plant is analgesic, antirheumatic and galactogogue[9]. A decoction is used internally in the treatment of headaches, joint pain, rheumatism, colds etc, and also to promote the flow of milk in a nursing mother[9].

Ecology

Ecosystem niche/layer

Ecological Functions

Nothing listed.

Forage

Nothing listed.

Shelter

Nothing listed.

Propagation

Spores - they very quickly lose their viability (within 3 days) and are best sown as soon as they are ripe on the surface of a humus-rich sterilized soil in a lightly shaded place in a greenhouse. Keep the compost moist, preferably by putting a plastic bag over the pot. Plants develop very rapidly, pot on small clumps of plantlets as soon as they are large enough to handle and keep humid until they are well established. Do not plant outside until the ferns are at least 2 years old. Cultivars usually come true to type[1]. Division of the rootstock in the dormant season. This is a very strenuous exercise due to the mass of wiry roots[1].

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



Cultivation

Easily grown in a damp woodland or by the margins of pools and streams[11]. Likes a soil of swamp mud and loamy or fibrous peat, sand and loam[12]. Succeeds in most moist soils, preferring acid conditions[1]. Requires a constant supply of water, doing well by ponds, streams etc[12]. Plants thrive in full sun so long as there is no shortage of moisture in the soil and also in shady situations beneath shrubs etc[1]. Requires a shady position[13].

Plants are hardy to at least -20°c, they are evergreen in warm winter areas but deciduous elsewhere[1]. This species is sometimes cultivated for its edible fronds[1]. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer[14]. A very ornamental plant[12].

The rhizome is large and slowly creeping[11].

Crops

Problems, pests & diseases

Associations & Interactions

There are no interactions listed for Osmunda cinnamomea. 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 Osmunda cinnamomea.

Descendants

Cultivars

Varieties

None listed.

Subspecies

None listed.

Full Data

This table shows all the data stored for this plant.

Taxonomy
Binomial name
Osmunda cinnamomea
Genus
Osmunda
Family
Osmundaceae
Imported References
Medicinal 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
3
Heat Zone
?
Water
high
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











    References

    1. ? 1.01.11.21.31.41.51.61.71.81.9 Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992. MacMillan Press ISBN 0-333-47494-5 (1992-00-00)
    2. ? Schofield. J. J. Discovering Wild Plants - Alaska, W. Canada and the Northwest. ()
    3. ? 3.03.1 Uphof. J. C. Th. Dictionary of Economic Plants. Weinheim (1959-00-00)
    4. ? 4.04.1 Usher. G. A Dictionary of Plants Used by Man. Constable ISBN 0094579202 (1974-00-00)
    5. ? 5.05.1 Elias. T. and Dykeman. P. A Field Guide to N. American Edible Wild Plants. Van Nostrand Reinhold ISBN 0442222009 (1982-00-00)
    6. ? 6.06.1 Brooklyn Botanic Garden Oriental Herbs and Vegetables, Vol 39 No. 2. Brooklyn Botanic Garden (1986-00-00)
    7. ? 7.07.1 McPherson. A. and S. Wild Food Plants of Indiana. Indiana University Press ISBN 0-253-28925-4 (1977-00-00)
    8. ? 8.08.1 Facciola. S. Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants. Kampong Publications ISBN 0-9628087-0-9 (1990-00-00)
    9. ? 9.09.19.29.39.49.59.69.7 Moerman. D. Native American Ethnobotany Timber Press. Oregon. ISBN 0-88192-453-9 (1998-00-00)
    10. ? 10.010.1 Saunders. C. F. Edible and Useful Wild Plants of the United States and Canada. Dover Publications ISBN 0-486-23310-3 (1976-00-00)
    11. ? 11.011.1 Phillips. R. & Rix. M. Perennials Volumes 1 and 2. Pan Books ISBN 0-330-30936-9 (1991-00-00)
    12. ? 12.012.112.2 F. Chittendon. RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956 Oxford University Press (1951-00-00)
    13. ? Brickell. C. The RHS Gardener's Encyclopedia of Plants and Flowers Dorling Kindersley Publishers Ltd. ISBN 0-86318-386-7 (1990-00-00)
    14. ? Thomas. G. S. Perennial Garden Plants J. M. Dent & Sons, London. ISBN 0 460 86048 8 (1990-00-00)
    15. ? Fernald. M. L. Gray's Manual of Botany. American Book Co. (1950-00-00)