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Lythrum salicaria - L.
                 
Common Name Purple Loosestrife
Family Lythraceae
USDA hardiness 3-10
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Reed swamps at the margins of lakes and slow-flowing rivers, fens and marshes, avoiding acid soils[17].
Range Europe, including Britain, south to N. Africa east to western and northern Asia. N. America..
Edibility Rating  
Other Uses  
Weed Potential Yes
Medicinal Rating  
Care
Fully Hardy Moist Soil Wet Soil Water Plants Semi-shade Full sun

Summary
Bloom Color: Pink. Main Bloom Time: Late summer, Mid summer. Form: Upright or erect.

Lythrum salicaria Purple Loosestrife


http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Illustration_Lythrum_salicaria1.jpg
Lythrum salicaria Purple Loosestrife
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:BS_Thurner_Hof
   
Physical Characteristics
 icon of manicon of flower
Lythrum salicaria is a PERENNIAL growing to 1 m (3ft 3in) by 0.5 m (1ft 8in) at a fast rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 3. 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 Bees, flies.It is noted for attracting wildlife.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and can grow in heavy clay soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist or wet soil and can grow in water.

Synonyms

Habitats
 Pond; Bog Garden;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Leaves;  Root.
Edible Uses: Colouring.

Leaves - cooked[13, 46, 61, 105]. Rich in calcium[179]. Root - cooked[13]. An edible dye is obtained from the flowers[13].
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.

Antibiotic;  Astringent;  Hypoglycaemic;  Styptic;  Vulnerary;  Antidiarrhoeal.

Purple loosestrife is an astringent herb that is mainly employed as a treatment for diarrhoea and dysentery. It can be safely taken by people of all ages and has been used to help arrest diarrhoea in breast-feeding babies[254]. It can also be used to treat heavy periods and inter-menstrual bleeding[254]. Modern research has shown the whole plant to be antibiotic and to be particularly effective against the micro-organism that causes typhus[254]. The flowering plant is antibiotic, highly astringent, hypoglycaemic, styptic and vulnerary[4, 7, 9, 21, 152, 218, 238]. It is valued as an intestinal disinfectant, especially in cases of enteritis[7], an infusion is used internally in the treatment of diarrhoea, internal bleeding, excessive menstruation etc[9, 222, 238]. The flowering plant is harvested in the summer and can be used fresh or dried[9]. Externally, the plant is used as a cleansing and healing wash for wounds, sores, impetigo, eczema, excess vaginal discharge, vaginal itching etc[7, 222, 238, 254]. The powdered plant is used as a haemostatic in cases of severe nosebleeds[7]. The stems are regarded as gum stimulators and are given to children to chew in order to strengthen weak or bleeding gums[7].
Other Uses
Cosmetic;  Dye;  Preservative;  Tannin;  Teeth.

A decoction of the plant is impregnated into wood, rope etc to prevent it rotting in water[74]. The leaves contain about 12% tannin, the stems 10.5%, the flowers 13.7% and the roots 8.5%[218]. It is probably these tannins that preserve the wood etc[218]. The powdered plant is used cosmetically in face-packs to counteract reddened skin[7].
Cultivation details
Landscape Uses:Container, Massing, Rock garden, Seashore, Specimen. Succeeds in ordinary garden soil, especially if it is damp[1]. Prefers a neutral to alkaline soil[238]. Grows well in heavy clay soils. Grows well in marshy soils[24] and succeeds in shallow water at the edges of ponds[56]. Succeeds in full sun or partial shade[188]. A very hardy plant, tolerating temperatures down to at least -25°c[187]. This species can be very invasive and has been declared a noxious weed in some countries. Since being introduced in N. America it has invaded native marshlands, florming large areas of dense stands and crowding out many native species[274]. A very ornamental plant[1]. A good bee and butterfly plant[24]. Plants usually self-sow when well sited[200]. Special Features:Invasive, Naturalizing, Attracts butterflies, Suitable for cut flowers.
Propagation
Seed - sow in the autumn or the spring in a cold frame. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in the summer. If you have sufficient seed it could be worthwhile trying a sowing in situ in the autumn or the spring. Division in March or October[188]. Larger clumps can be replanted direct into their permanent positions, though it is best to pot up smaller clumps and grow them on in a cold frame until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the spring. Basal cuttings in the spring[238]. 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.
Other Names
Found In
Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status
IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status :
Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameEdibility RatingMedicinal Rating
Lythrum portulaWater Purslane, Spatulaleaf loosestrife10
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Expert comment
 
Author
L.
Botanical References
17200
Links / References
For a list of references used on this page please go here
Readers comment
 
C.W. W.
This plant is listed in the Federal and State Noxious Weeds and it is illegal to import, sell, offer for sale, or distribute the seeds or the plants of purple loosestrife in any form. Jul 19 2010 12:00AM
Considered an invasive species.
USDA Plant Database (NRCS)
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Subject : Lythrum salicaria  

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