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Uses

Toxic parts

The plant is poisonous in large quantities, causing violent purging and vomiting[1][2].

Edible uses

There are no edible uses listed for Polygala senega.

Material uses

There are no material uses listed for Polygala senega.

Medicinal uses(Warning!)

Seneca snake root was employed medicinally by several native North American Indian tribes, who used it to treat a variety of complaints[3]. It is still used in modern herbalism where it is valued mainly as an expectorant and stimulant to treat bronchial asthma, chronic bronchitis and whooping cough[4].The root contains triterpenoid saponins, these promote the clearing of phlegm from the bronchial tubes.

The root is antidote, cathartic, diaphoretic, diuretic, emetic, expectorant, sialagogue, stimulant[1][2][5][6][7][8]. It was used by the North American Indians in the treatment of snake bites[1][5] and has been found of use in the treatment of various respiratory problems including pleurisy and pneumonia[1][3]. The root is harvested when the plant dies down in autumn and is dried for later use[1]. Use with caution[1][2], excess doses cause diarrhoea and vomiting[8]. See also the notes above on toxicity. A tea made from the bark has been drunk in order to bring about a miscarriage[9]. The dried root is used as a stimulating expectorant - it is said to owe its medicinal value to the presence of saponins and in large doses is poisonous[9]. The root is harvested in the autumn[9].

The root has been used to treat snakebites, it is chewed and applied to the bite[9].

Ecology

Ecosystem niche/layer

Ecological Functions

Nothing listed.

Forage

Nothing listed.

Shelter

Nothing listed.

Propagation

Seed - sow spring or autumn in a cold frame[10]. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts.

Division.

Cuttings of young shoots in a frame in late spring[11].

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



Cultivation

Prefers a moderately fertile moisture-retentive well-drained soil, succeeding in full sun if the soil remains moist throughout the growing season, otherwise it is best in semi-shade[12]. Dislikes shade according to another report. The sub-species P. senega latifolia. Torr.&Gray. is cultivated as a medicinal plant in Japan[13].

Crops

Problems, pests & diseases

Associations & Interactions

There are no interactions listed for Polygala senega. 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 Polygala senega.

Descendants

Cultivars

Varieties

None listed.

Subspecies

None listed.

Full Data

This table shows all the data stored for this plant.

Taxonomy
Binomial name
Polygala senega
Genus
Polygala
Family
Polygalaceae
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
2
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. ? 1.01.11.21.31.41.51.6 Grieve. A Modern Herbal. Penguin ISBN 0-14-046-440-9 (1984-00-00)
    2. ? 2.02.12.22.3 Lust. J. The Herb Book. Bantam books ISBN 0-553-23827-2 (1983-00-00)
    3. ? 3.03.13.2 Moerman. D. Native American Ethnobotany Timber Press. Oregon. ISBN 0-88192-453-9 (1998-00-00)
    4. ? 4.04.1 Chevallier. A. The Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants Dorling Kindersley. London ISBN 9-780751-303148 (1996-00-00)
    5. ? 5.05.15.2 Uphof. J. C. Th. Dictionary of Economic Plants. Weinheim (1959-00-00)
    6. ? 6.06.1 Mills. S. Y. The Dictionary of Modern Herbalism. ()
    7. ? 7.07.1 Foster. S. & Duke. J. A. A Field Guide to Medicinal Plants. Eastern and Central N. America. Houghton Mifflin Co. ISBN 0395467225 (1990-00-00)
    8. ? 8.08.18.2 Bown. D. Encyclopaedia of Herbs and their Uses. Dorling Kindersley, London. ISBN 0-7513-020-31 (1995-00-00)
    9. ? 9.09.19.29.39.4 Weiner. M. A. Earth Medicine, Earth Food. Ballantine Books ISBN 0-449-90589-6 (1980-00-00)
    10. ? Matthews. V. The New Plantsman. Volume 1, 1994. Royal Horticultural Society ISBN 1352-4186 (1994-00-00)
    11. ? F. Chittendon. RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956 Oxford University Press (1951-00-00)
    12. ? 12.012.1 Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992. MacMillan Press ISBN 0-333-47494-5 (1992-00-00)
    13. ? Kariyone. T. Atlas of Medicinal Plants. ()
    14. ? Fernald. M. L. Gray's Manual of Botany. American Book Co. (1950-00-00)
    15. ? Britton. N. L. Brown. A. An Illustrated Flora of the Northern United States and Canada Dover Publications. New York. ISBN 0-486-22642-5 (1970-00-00)

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    Facts about "Polygala senega"RDF feed
    Article is incompleteYes +
    Article requires citationsNo +
    Article requires cleanupYes +
    Belongs to familyPolygalaceae +
    Belongs to genusPolygala +
    Has binomial namePolygala senega +
    Has common nameSenega Snake Root +
    Has drought toleranceIntolerant +
    Has flowers of typeHermaphrodite +
    Has hardiness zone2 +
    Has imagePolygala senega - Köhler–s Medizinal-Pflanzen-247.jpg +
    Has lifecycle typePerennial +
    Has mature height0.3 +
    Has mature width0.3 +
    Has medicinal partUnknown part +
    Has medicinal useAbortifacient +, Antidote +, Cathartic +, Diaphoretic +, Diuretic +, Emetic +, Expectorant +, Sialagogue + and Stimulant +
    Has primary imagePolygala_senega_-_Köhler–s_Medizinal-Pflanzen-247.jpg +
    Has search namepolygala senega + and senega snake root +
    Has shade toleranceLight shade +
    Has soil ph preferenceAcid +, Neutral +, Alkaline + and Very alkaline +
    Has soil texture preferenceSandy +, Loamy + and Clay +
    Has soil water retention preferenceWell drained +
    Has sun preferenceFull sun +
    Has taxonomic rankSpecies +
    Has taxonomy namePolygala senega +
    Has water requirementsmoderate +
    Is taxonomy typeSpecies +
    PFAF cultivation notes migratedNo +
    PFAF edible use notes migratedYes +
    PFAF material use notes migratedYes +
    PFAF medicinal use notes migratedNo +
    PFAF propagation notes migratedNo +
    PFAF toxicity notes migratedNo +
    Tolerates nutritionally poor soilNo +
    Uses mature size measurement unitMeters +
    Has subobjectThis property is a special property in this wiki.Polygala senega +, Polygala senega +, Polygala senega +, Polygala senega +, Polygala senega +, Polygala senega +, Polygala senega +, Polygala senega + and Polygala senega +