Leuzea safflower

Rhaponticum carthamoides (Willd.) Iljin.]Perennial herbaceous plant of the Asteraceae family (Compositae), with a thickened woody rhizome and numerous longish, thin, fibrous roots. The stem is straight, hollow, finely furrowed, cobwebby-pubescent in the upper part, up to 220 cm high. The leaves are large, alternate, deeply pinnate, smooth or slightly pubescent; the lower ones are petiolate, the upper ones are sessile. The inflorescence is a large, up to 5 cm in diameter, single spherical basket with a tiled wrapper, located at the top of the stem. Flowers purple-violet, bisexual. One flower basket produces up to 450 seeds. The fruits are light brown ribbed achenes with a tuft of feathery hairs. Blossoms in July – August, fruits ripen in September. Propagated by seeds and vegetatively. It is distributed mainly in the mountains of Southern Siberia – in Gorny Altai, Kuznetsk Alatau, Western Sayan, the western part of the Eastern Sayan. Small isolated areas of the range are located on Khamar-Daban and in the mountains of Kazakhstan. In Siberian folk medicine, leuzea is known as a plant that “raises a person from fourteen diseases and fills him with youth.” The first information about the medicinal properties of Leuzea dates back to the second half of the 19th century. First introduced in Europe in the London Botanic Gardens in 1816. In Belarus, they began to study it since 1955. First introduced in Europe in the London Botanic Gardens in 1816. In Belarus, they began to study it since 1955. First introduced in Europe in the London Botanic Gardens in 1816. In Belarus, they began to study it since 1955.


For medicinal purposes, rhizomes with roots are used, which are harvested from mid-August until the onset of winter. Only the oldest and largest specimens are dug up. In culture, it is harvested on the 3rd-4th year after sowing, when the underground part of the plants reaches the largest mass, but does not yet have dead and rotten roots. The excavated underground parts of plants are cleaned from the ground, the stems are removed and washed well in running water. Before drying, the raw material is dried in the sun for 4-6 days on racks raised at least 1 m above the soil surface. Large rhizomes are cut into several parts. Drying is carried out in the sun, in the open air in the shade, in ventilated heated rooms or in dryers at a temperature of 50-60 ° C, laying out a layer of 5-7 cm. for 15-20 years. Therefore, when harvesting, it will be necessary to leave at least 2-4 plants per 10 m2 thickets to restore populations. The shelf life of raw materials is 2 years. The color of rhizomes and roots outside is from brown-brown to almost black, at the break it is pale yellow. The smell of raw materials is pleasant, peculiar, the taste is slightly sweet, resinous. The main procurements are carried out in the Altai Territory (under licenses) and the Krasnoyarsk Territory of Russia and the East Kazakhstan Region of Kazakhstan.


The biological activity of the plant is associated mainly with the content of ecdysterone, the largest amount of which accumulates at the beginning of the growing season, the minimum in the flowering phase. The underground organs of Leuzea have psychostimulating and adaptogenic properties, improve blood circulation, have a vasodilating effect, contributing to the regulation of blood pressure, and increase the number of heartbeats. In addition, leuzea has hypoglycemic properties, apparently due to increased use of glucose by working tissues. Infusion of flower baskets exhibits strong anticoagulant properties.


Underground part. Liquid extract – for functional disorders of the nervous system, reduced work capacity, mental fatigue and loss of strength, chronic alcoholism, impotence, for the regulation of blood pressure. In folk medicine, rhizomes, roots (sometimes grass) are used in the form of infusions, decoctions, vodka tinctures as a stimulant in case of loss of strength, insomnia, overwork, after serious illnesses, impotence, excessive irritability.


Leuzea liquid extract (Extractum Leuzeae fluidum). Alcoholic (70% ethyl alcohol) extract (1:1) from rhizomes with roots of leuzea. It is a reddish-brown liquid with a bitter taste; when mixed with water, it gives a cloudy solution. Take up to 20-30 drops 2-3 times daily before meals. Store in a cool, dark place. CONTRAINDICATIONS AND POSSIBLE SIDE EFFECTS: It is not recommended to take Leuzea safflower products for people with severely high blood pressure and diseases of the fundus. Leuzea preparations are used as directed and under the supervision of a physician.


Liquid extract of leuzea is part of the refreshing and tonic drink “Sayan”, balms “Gorno-Altai”, “Siberia”, “Russian balm”. Included in the composition of the ingredients of apple wine “Meruet”. In the perfume industry, the extract is used in creams (Aelita, etc.). Honey plant, collection of honey up to 130 kg/ha. Stern. The plant is introduced into culture. Cultivated in Novosibirsk, Leningrad, Moscow and other regions.


Leuzea safflower is bred by sowing stratified seeds. Plants develop well on fertilized, drained soils, when the groundwater level is not less than 1.5-2 m from the plane. On heavy and temporarily excessively waterlogged soils, this crop grows and develops slowly, often affected by fungal and bacterial diseases. The site is treated in the same way as for tilled crops. For digging, 2-3 kg of rotted manure or compost per 1 m 2 are added, nitrogen, phosphorus and potash mineral fertilizers. Seeds are sown in early spring after 1-2 days after tillage or in autumn. The best sowing period is spring. Seeds are treated and stratified for 1 month. Placed in an ordinary way with a seeding depth of 1.5-3 cm and row spacing of 45 cm. Seedlings are found on the 9-20th day. During the growing season, crops are weeded and loosened. The first inter-row treatment is done immediately after the emergence of seedlings to a depth of 5-6 cm, and the next – by 10 cm after 7-10 days after the first. In the transitional areas in late autumn, dead leaves are removed and the soil is harrowed. Leuzea can grow in one place for 12 years or more.

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