The fruit is aperient, strongly diuretic and lithontripic. It is used internally in the treatment of gravel, suppression of urine etc and is highly recommended in fevers and in gout. The fruit is harvested when fully ripe and can be used fresh, juiced or dried. The calyx should be removed. The leaves and stems are febrifuge and slightly tonic. They are used in the treatment of the malaise that follows malaria, and for weak or anaemic people. The fresh leaves have been used externally in the treatment of skin inflammations. The seed is used to promote early labour.A homeopathic remedy is made from the fruit. It is used in the treatment of kidney and bladder disorders.
Division in spring. Very easy, larger divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions. We have found that it is better to pot up the smaller divisions and grow them on in light shade in a cold frame until they are well established before planting them out in late spring or early summer.Basal cuttings in early summer. Harvest the shoots with plenty of underground stem when they are about 8 - 10cm above the ground. Pot them up into individual pots and keep them in light shade in a cold frame or greenhouse until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the summer.
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The fully dormant plant is hardy in most of Britain, though the young growth in spring can be damaged by late frosts. A very ornamental plant though it can be invasive. This sub-species, which is sometimes treated as a separate species, is a more vigorous form of P. alkekengi with larger fruits.Slugs are very fond of the new growth in spring and can destroy even quite large clumps[K].
Problems, pests & diseases
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