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Asarum caudatum - Lindl.
                 
Common Name Wild Ginger, British Columbia wildginger
Family Aristolochiaceae
USDA hardiness 6-10
Known Hazards Although no reports of toxicity have been found for this plant, at least 3 other members of this genus have reports that the leaves are toxic[7, 19]. Some caution is therefore advised in the use of this plant.
Habitats Deep shade in moist pine woods and redwood forests[60, 187]. Understory of conifer forests, usually in mesic or wet places from sea level to 1200 metres and occasionally to 2200 metres[270].
Range Western N. America - British Columbia to California.
Edibility Rating  
Other Uses  
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating  
Care
Fully Hardy Moist Soil Full shade Semi-shade

Summary
Bloom Color: Red. Main Bloom Time: Mid spring. Form: Irregular or sprawling, Spreading or horizontal.

Asarum caudatum Wild Ginger, British Columbia wildginger


(c) 2010 Ken Fern & Plants For A Future
Asarum caudatum Wild Ginger, British Columbia wildginger
(c) 2010 Ken Fern & Plants For A Future
   
Physical Characteristics
 icon of manicon of flower
Asarum caudatum is an evergreen Perennial growing to 0.1 m (0ft 4in) by 0.3 m (1ft) at a fast rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 7. It is in leaf 12-Jan It is in flower from Jul to August. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Flies.Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid and neutral soils. It can grow in full shade (deep woodland) or semi-shade (light woodland). It prefers moist soil.

Synonyms

Habitats
Woodland Garden Dappled Shade; Shady Edge; not Deep Shade; Ground Cover;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts:
Edible Uses: Condiment;  Tea.

The root can be used as a ginger substitute[183]. The root has a pungent, aromatic smell like mild pepper and ginger mixed, but more strongly aromatic. It can be harvested all year round, but is best in the autumn[K]. It can also be dried for later use[K]. Leaves are a tea substitute[177, 183].
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.

Analgesic;  Antirheumatic;  Appetizer;  Laxative;  Poultice;  Stomachic;  Tonic.

The root is laxative, stomachic and tonic[61, 257]. A tea made from the root is used in the treatment of colds, colic, indigestion and stomach pains[213, 257]. The root is harvested in the autumn and dried for later use[238]. The whole plant is analgesic, antirheumatic, appetizer and tonic[257]. A decoction is used externally to treat headaches, intestinal pain and knee pains[257]. A poultice made from the heated leaves is applied to boils, skin infections and toothaches, whilst a decoction of the leaves is used as a wash on sores[257].
Other Uses
A useful ground-cover plant for deep shade[187], spreading by its roots[208].
Cultivation details
Landscape Uses:Ground cover, Woodland garden. Prefers a rich moist neutral to acid soil in woodland or a shady position in the rock garden[1, 200]. Plants are hardy to at least -15°c[200]. The flowers are malodorous and are pollinated by flies[200]. Plants often self-sow when growing in a suitable position[200]. Special Features:Attractive foliage, North American native, Fragrant foliage, Inconspicuous flowers or blooms.
Propagation
Seed - best sown in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe in the summer[134]. Stored seed will require 3 weeks cold stratification and should be sown in late winter[134]. The seed usually germinates in the spring in 1 - 4 or more weeks at 18°c[134]. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in light shade in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out when large enough in late spring. Division in spring or autumn. Plants are slow to increase[200]. It is best to pot the divisions up and keep them in light shade in the greenhouse until they are growing away strongly.

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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
Asarum arifolium 01
Asarum blumei 01
Asarum canadenseSnake Root, Canadian wildginger, Canada Wild Ginger, Wild Ginger33
Asarum dilatatum 20
Asarum europaeumAsarabacca, European Wild Ginger02
Asarum forbesiiDu Heng01
Asarum heterotropoides 02
Asarum maximum 01
Asarum nipponicum 10
Asarum reflexum 20
Asarum shuttleworthiiAsarabacca, Mottled Wild Ginger20
Asarum sieboldiiWild Ginger02
Asarum takaoi 10
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Expert comment
 
Author
Lindl.
Botanical References
60200270
Links / References
For a list of references used on this page please go here
Readers comment
 
Elizabeth H.
Sara Tue Jan 3 2006

healingbooks has a detailed benefits list of ginger including links to research

Elizabeth H.
L D Mon Jan 26 2009
I would like to share my experience with wild ginger. Using the guide that I had available, and a little bit of forgetful oversight, I accidentally poisoned myself and at least one other. I made a wild salad that I supplemented with a couple wild ginger leaves for flavor. It was said in the guide that the leaves could be used in tea, and the roots raw or cooked as a flavoring, but it did not explicitly say that the leaves were edible or inedible raw. I was at a potluck after I had eaten very little. I stuffed myself, and had enough salad to consume at least 1 or 2 whole leaves of Wild ginger. I got very ill to my stomach, and so did one other person. I puked 3 times, and the other person was ill with puking and nausia till the next morning. Do not eat raw, or only eat raw perhapse as an anti-nausia on an empty stomach. It is both an anti-nausea, and ipecac. I believe that it operated as an ipecac because I had eaten so much.
Elizabeth H.
david Sat Dec 26 2009
Leaves can be used as a seasoning, but large does might cause vomiting (From:The Encylopedia of Edible Plants of North America by Couplan)
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Subject : Asarum caudatum  

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