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Uses

Toxic parts

The berries are purgative[1].

Edible uses

Notes

Young shoots - cooked[2][3][4][5][1][6]. They are harvested in the spring as they grow through the soil and used as an asparagus substitute[7][8]. The taste is pungent and rather bitter[9][8]. The roasted seed is a coffee substitute[2][10][8].

Unknown part

Material uses

Mature shoots are bound into bunches and used as scourers or as besoms[4][11][1][6][12][13].

Unknown part

Medicinal uses(Warning!)

Butcher's broom is little used in modern herbalism but, in view of its positive effect upon varicose veins and haemorrhoids, it could be due for a revival[14].

The root is aperient, deobstruent, depurative, diaphoretic, diuretic and vasoconstrictor[4][7][15]. It has been taken internally in the past in the treatment of jaundice, gout, and kidney and bladder stones, at the present time it is used to treat venous insufficiency and haemorrhoids[15]. It should not be prescribed for patients with hypertension[15]. It is also applied externally in the treatment of haemorrhoids[15]. The root is harvested in the autumn and dried for later use[4]. The whole plant is also sometimes used[4]. This remedy should not be given to people with high blood pressure[14].

The plant contains saponin glycosides, including ruscogenin and neoruscogenin. These substances are anti-inflammatory and cause the contraction of blood vessels, especially veins[14].

Ecology

Ecosystem niche/layer

Soil surface

Ecological Functions

Ground cover

Forage

Nothing listed.

Shelter

Nothing listed.

Propagation

Seed - sow the seed thinly in early spring in a cold frame in light shade. The seed germinates better if it is given a period of cold stratification. Germination can be rather slow, sometimes taking 12 months or more. Grow the seedlings on in the pot in light shade in the greenhouse for their first growing season, giving occasional liquid feeds to ensure they do not suffer nutrient deficiencies. Prick them out into individual pots in the following spring and grow them on for at least another year in the pots before planting them out in early summer. Be very sure to protect the seedlings from slugs[K]. Division as the plant comes into growth in early spring[16]. Larger divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions. We have found it best to pot up the smaller divisions and grow them on in a lightly shaded position in a cold frame, planting them out once they are well established in the summer.

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



Cultivation

Tolerant of most soils[6], including chalky and heavy clay soils[17]. Prefers a shady position[2][18], tolerating dense dry shade and bad growing conditions[16], including the drip-line of trees[13]. Dislikes much wetness at the roots[16]. Established plants are drought resistant[16].

A very hardy plant, when fully dormant it can tolerate temperatures down to about -25°c[19]. Plants have a slowly creeping tough rootstock and eventually form large clumps[19]. Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus[17].

Plants are unusual in that the flowers are produced from the middle of the leaf[4]. Although normally dioecious, some hermaphrodite forms are known[17]. One of these is called 'Sparkler'. Male and female plants must usually be grown if seed is required.

Crops

Problems, pests & diseases

Associations & Interactions

There are no interactions listed for Ruscus aculeatus. 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 Ruscus aculeatus.

Descendants

Cultivars

Varieties

None listed.

Subspecies

None listed.

Full Data

This table shows all the data stored for this plant.

Taxonomy
Binomial name
Ruscus aculeatus
Genus
Ruscus
Family
Ruscaceae
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
7
Heat Zone
?
Water
moderate
Sun
partial sun
Shade
permanent shade
Soil Texture
Soil Water Retention
Environmental Tolerances
  • Drought
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
Fertility
Pollinators
Flower Colour
?
Flower Type

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"image:Illustration Ruscus aculeatus0.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki. "image:Illustration Ruscus aculeatus0.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki.


"image:Illustration Ruscus aculeatus0.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki.

"image:Illustration Ruscus aculeatus0.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki.

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References

  1. ? 1.01.11.21.31.4 Ceres. Free for All. Thorsons Publishers ISBN 0-7225-0445-4 (1977-00-00)
  2. ? 2.02.12.22.3 F. Chittendon. RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956 Oxford University Press (1951-00-00)
  3. ? 3.03.1 Hedrick. U. P. Sturtevant's Edible Plants of the World. Dover Publications ISBN 0-486-20459-6 (1972-00-00)
  4. ? 4.04.14.24.34.44.54.64.74.8 Grieve. A Modern Herbal. Penguin ISBN 0-14-046-440-9 (1984-00-00)
  5. ? 5.05.1 Mabey. R. Food for Free. Collins ISBN 0-00-219060-5 (1974-00-00)
  6. ? 6.06.16.26.36.46.5 Bean. W. Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement. Murray (1981-00-00)
  7. ? 7.07.17.27.3 Chiej. R. Encyclopaedia of Medicinal Plants. MacDonald ISBN 0-356-10541-5 (1984-00-00)
  8. ? 8.08.18.28.3 Facciola. S. Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants. Kampong Publications ISBN 0-9628087-0-9 (1990-00-00)
  9. ? 9.09.1 Bianchini. F., Corbetta. F. and Pistoia. M. Fruits of the Earth. ()
  10. ? 10.010.1 Tanaka. T. Tanaka's Cyclopaedia of Edible Plants of the World. Keigaku Publishing (1976-00-00)
  11. ? 11.011.1 Mabey. R. Plants with a Purpose. Fontana ISBN 0-00-635555-2 (1979-00-00)
  12. ? 12.012.1 Polunin. O. Flowers of Europe - A Field Guide. Oxford University Press ISBN 0192176218 (1969-00-00)
  13. ? 13.013.113.2 Thomas. G. S. Ornamental Shrubs, Climbers and Bamboos. Murray ISBN 0-7195-5043-2 (1992-00-00)
  14. ? 14.014.114.214.3 Chevallier. A. The Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants Dorling Kindersley. London ISBN 9-780751-303148 (1996-00-00)
  15. ? 15.015.115.215.315.4 Bown. D. Encyclopaedia of Herbs and their Uses. Dorling Kindersley, London. ISBN 0-7513-020-31 (1995-00-00)
  16. ? 16.016.116.216.3 Beckett. G. and K. Planting Native Trees and Shrubs. Jarrold (1979-00-00)
  17. ? 17.017.117.217.3 Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992. MacMillan Press ISBN 0-333-47494-5 (1992-00-00)
  18. ? Brown. Shade Plants for Garden and Woodland. ()
  19. ? 19.019.1 Phillips. R. & Rix. M. Perennials Volumes 1 and 2. Pan Books ISBN 0-330-30936-9 (1991-00-00)
  20. ? Clapham, Tootin and Warburg. Flora of the British Isles. Cambridge University Press (1962-00-00)

"image:Illustration Ruscus aculeatus0.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki.

Facts about "Ruscus aculeatus"RDF feed
Article is incompleteYes +
Article requires citationsNo +
Article requires cleanupYes +
Belongs to familyRuscaceae +
Belongs to genusRuscus +
Functions asGround cover +
Has binomial nameRuscus aculeatus +
Has common nameButcher's Broom +
Has drought toleranceTolerant +
Has edible partUnknown part + and Stem +
Has edible useCoffee + and Unknown use +
Has environmental toleranceDrought +
Has fertility typeSelf sterile + and Insects +
Has flowers of typeDioecious +
Has growth rateSlow +
Has hardiness zone7 +
Has imageIllustration Ruscus aculeatus0.jpg +
Has lifecycle typePerennial +
Has material partUnknown part +
Has material useBroom + and Scourer +
Has mature height0.75 +
Has mature width1 +
Has medicinal partUnknown part +
Has medicinal useAperient +, Deobstruent +, Depurative +, Diaphoretic +, Diuretic + and Vasoconstrictor +
Has primary imageIllustration Ruscus aculeatus0.jpg +
Has search nameruscus aculeatus + and butcher's broom +
Has shade tolerancePermanent shade +
Has soil ph preferenceAcid +, Neutral +, Alkaline + and Very alkaline +
Has soil texture preferenceSandy +, Loamy +, Clay + and Heavy clay +
Has soil water retention preferenceWell drained +
Has sun preferencePartial sun +
Has taxonomic rankSpecies +
Has taxonomy nameRuscus aculeatus +
Has water requirementsmoderate +
Inhabits ecosystem nicheSoil surface +
Is deciduous or evergreenEvergreen +
Is herbaceous or woodyWoody +
Is taxonomy typeSpecies +
PFAF cultivation notes migratedNo +
PFAF edible use notes migratedNo +
PFAF material use notes migratedNo +
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.Ruscus aculeatus +, Ruscus aculeatus +, Ruscus aculeatus +, Ruscus aculeatus +, Ruscus aculeatus +, Ruscus aculeatus +, Ruscus aculeatus +, Ruscus aculeatus +, Ruscus aculeatus + and Ruscus aculeatus +