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Apium graveolens - L.                
                 
Common Name Wild Celery. Ajmod, Ajwain-ka-patta (Indian)
Family Apiaceae or Umbelliferae
Synonyms Apium celleri. Apium decumbens. Celeria graveolens. Carum graveolens.
Known Hazards If the plant is infected with the fungus Sclerotinia sclerotiorum, skin contact with the sap can cause dermatitis in sensitive people[65]. This is more likely to happen to Caucasians[218]. Allergic responses include anaphylaxis in sensitive individuals. Cross-allergenicity between celery, cucumber, carrot, watermelon and possibly apples. Avoid during pregnancy as emmenagogue, abortifacient and uterine stimulant activity reported [301].
Habitats Ditches, by rivers and in other damp locations, especially near the sea in salt marshes[9, 17, 100].
Range Central and southern Europe, including Britain, to temperate areas of Africa and Asia.
Edibility Rating  
Medicinal Rating  
Care
Fully Hardy Moist Soil Semi-shade

Summary       

Physical Characteristics       
 icon of manicon of flower
Apium graveolens is a BIENNIAL growing to 0.6 m (2ft) by 0.3 m (1ft in).
It is hardy to zone (UK) 6 and is not frost tender. It is in flower from Jun to August, and the seeds ripen from Aug to September. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Flies, self.The plant is self-fertile.


USDA hardiness zone : Coming soon


Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in saline soils.
It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland). It prefers moist soil.

Apium graveolens Wild Celery. Ajmod, Ajwain-ka-patta (Indian)


http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Illustration_Apium_graveolens0.jpg
Apium graveolens Wild Celery. Ajmod, Ajwain-ka-patta (Indian)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Fir0002
   
Habitats       
 Cultivated Beds;
Edible Uses                                         
Edible Parts: Leaves;  Root;  Seed.
Edible Uses: Condiment.

Leaves - raw or cooked[52, 105]. Mainly used as a flavouring in soups etc[5, 7, 9, 46]. They can be eaten raw but have a very strong flavour[52]. They are toxic if consumed in large amounts[238]. Seed - a flavouring. Used in small quantities to flavour soups and stews[238]. An essential oil from the seed is also used as a flavouring[46, 105]. Root - cooked[74].
Medicinal Uses


Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.

Antianxiety;  Antirheumatic;  Aperient;  Appetizer;  Carminative;  Diuretic;  Emmenagogue;  Galactogogue;  Nervine;  Stimulant;  Tonic.


Wild celery has a long history of medicinal and food use. it is an aromatic bitter tonic herb that reduces blood pressure, relieves indigestion, stimulates the uterus and is anti-inflammatory[238]. The ripe seeds, herb and root are aperient, carminative, diuretic, emmenagogue, galactogogue, nervine, stimulant and tonic[4, 7, 21, 165]. Wild celery is said to be useful in cases of hysteria, promoting restfulness and sleep and diffusing through the system a mild sustaining influence[4]. The herb should not be prescribed for pregnant women[238]. Seeds purchased for cultivation purposes are often dressed with a fungicide, they should not be used for medicinal purposes[238]. The root is harvested in the autumn and can be used fresh or dried[238]. The whole plant is harvested when fruiting and is usually liquidized to extract the juice[238]. The seeds are harvested as they ripen and are dried for later use[238]. An essential oil obtained from the plant has a calming effect on the central nervous system. Some of its constituents have antispasmodic, sedative and anticonvulsant actions. It has been shown to be of value in treating high blood pressure[254]. A homeopathic remedy is made from the herb[9]. It is used in treating rheumatism and kidney complaints[9].
Other Uses
Essential.

The growing plant is an insect repellent, it repels the cabbage white butterfly so is a good companion for brassicas[20].
Cultivation details                                         
Prefers a rich moist soil in sun or semi-shade[238], but with some shade in the summer[52]. It is tolerant of saline soils[238]. The plants are fairly hardy, though they can be damaged by hard frosts[238]. Wild celery is the parent of the cultivated celery (A. graveolens dulce) as well as celery leaf (A. graveolens secalinum) and celeriac (A. graveolens rapaceum). This entry only deals with the wild celery, the other plants are dealt with separately. A very aromatic plant, the aroma being most noticeable when the foliage is bruised. The growing plant is a good companion for leeks, tomatoes, French beans and brassicas[18].
                                                                                 
Propagation                                         
Seed - sow spring or autumn in situ. If seed is in short supply it can be sown in a cold frame in spring. The seed can harbour certain diseases of celery, it is usually treated by seed companies before being sold but if you save your own seed you should make sure that only seed from healthy plants is used[1].
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Expert comment                                         
 
      
Author                                         
L.
                                                                                 
Botanical References                                         
17200
                                                                                 
Links / References                                         

[1]F. Chittendon. RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956
Comprehensive listing of species and how to grow them. Somewhat outdated, it has been replaces in 1992 by a new dictionary (see [200]).
[4]Grieve. A Modern Herbal.
Not so modern (1930's?) but lots of information, mainly temperate plants.
[5]Mabey. R. Food for Free.
Edible wild plants found in Britain. Fairly comprehensive, very few pictures and rather optimistic on the desirability of some of the plants.
[7]Chiej. R. Encyclopaedia of Medicinal Plants.
Covers plants growing in Europe. Also gives other interesting information on the plants. Good photographs.
[9]Launert. E. Edible and Medicinal Plants.
Covers plants in Europe. a drawing of each plant, quite a bit of interesting information.
[17]Clapham, Tootin and Warburg. Flora of the British Isles.
A very comprehensive flora, the standard reference book but it has no pictures.
[18]Philbrick H. and Gregg R. B. Companion Plants.
Details of beneficial and antagonistic relationships between neighbouring plants.
[20]Riotte. L. Companion Planting for Successful Gardening.
Fairly good.
[21]Lust. J. The Herb Book.
Lots of information tightly crammed into a fairly small book.
[46]Uphof. J. C. Th. Dictionary of Economic Plants.
An excellent and very comprehensive guide but it only gives very short descriptions of the uses without any details of how to utilize the plants. Not for the casual reader.
[52]Larkcom. J. Salads all the Year Round.
A good and comprehensive guide to temperate salad plants, with full organic details of cultivation.
[74]Komarov. V. L. Flora of the USSR.
An immense (25 or more large volumes) and not yet completed translation of the Russian flora. Full of information on plant uses and habitats but heavy going for casual readers.
[100]Polunin. O. Flowers of Europe - A Field Guide.
An excellent and well illustrated pocket guide for those with very large pockets. Also gives some details on plant uses.
[105]Tanaka. T. Tanaka's Cyclopaedia of Edible Plants of the World.
The most comprehensive guide to edible plants I've come across. Only the briefest entry for each species, though, and some of the entries are more than a little dubious. Not for the casual reader.
[165]Mills. S. Y. The Dictionary of Modern Herbalism.
An excellent small herbal.
[238]Bown. D. Encyclopaedia of Herbs and their Uses.
A very well presented and informative book on herbs from around the globe. Plenty in it for both the casual reader and the serious student. Just one main quibble is the silly way of having two separate entries for each plant.
[254]Chevallier. A. The Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants
An excellent guide to over 500 of the more well known medicinal herbs from around the world.
[301]Karalliedde. L. and Gawarammana. I. Traditional Herbal Medicines
A guide to the safer use of herbal medicines.

Readers comment                                         
 
Elizabeth H.
WAYNE A. SIEGERT Mon Mar 31 14:22:00 2003
WHERE CAN I BUY WILD CELERY FOR PLANTING IN MY DUCK PONDS

ALSO INTERESTED IN "POND PEPPER" FOR WILD FOWL PLANTINGS

THANKS

WAYNE SIEGERT

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