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Ephedra fragilis - Desf.

Common Name
Family Ephedraceae
USDA hardiness 7-10
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Rocky hills and stone walls[148].
Range Europe - E. Mediterranean.
Edibility Rating  
Other Uses  
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating  
Care
Frost Hardy Well drained soil Moist Soil Full sun
Ephedra fragilis


http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Falconaumanni
Ephedra fragilis
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Falconaumanni

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Summary


Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of shrub
Ephedra fragilis is an evergreen Shrub growing to 1.8 m (6ft).
It is hardy to zone (UK) 8. It is in leaf 12-Jan. The species is dioecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but only one sex is to be found on any one plant so both male and female plants must be grown if seed is required). The plant is not self-fertile.
Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought.

Synonyms

Habitats

 Cultivated Beds; South Wall. In. West Wall. In.

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Fruit.
Edible Uses:

Fruit - raw. Sweet. The fruit is about 10mm in diameter[200].

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.

Antiasthmatic.

Members of this genus contain various medicinally active alkaloids (but notably ephedrine) and they are widely used in preparations for the treatment of asthma and catarrh[148, 238]. The whole plant can be used at much lower concentrations than the isolated constituents - unlike using the isolated ephedrine, using the whole plant rarely gives rise to side-effects[254]. The plant also has antiviral effects, particularly against influenza[238]. The stems are a pungent, bitter, warm herb that dilates the bronchial vessels whilst stimulating the heart and central nervous system[148, 238]. The stems are also diaphoretic, diuretic, febrifuge, hypertensive, nervine, pectoral, tonic, vasoconstrictor and vasodilator[165, 176, 238]. They are used internally in the treatment of asthma, hay fever and allergic complaints[238]. They are also combined with a number of other herbs and used in treating a wide range of complaints[238]. This herb should be used with great caution, preferably under the supervision of a qualified practitioner[238]. It should not be prescribed to patients who are taking monoamine oxidase inhibitors, or suffering from high blood pressure, hyperthyroidism or glaucoma[238]. Ephedrine is seen as a performance-boosting herb and, as such, is a forbidden substance in many sporting events such as athletics[K]. The stems can be harvested at any time of the year and are dried for later use[238].

Other Uses

None known

Cultivation details

Requires a well-drained loamy soil and a sunny position[11]. Established plants are drought resistant and are also lime tolerant[200]. Plants are not very hardy in Britain, tolerating a few degrees of frost[200]. The report on medicinal uses refers specifically to E. fragilis campylopoda. (C.A.Meyer.)Ascherson.&Graebner. This plant is growing outdoors at Kew, probably planted in 1968, and seems to be perfectly hardy[K]. It is said to come from N. Asia which is rather confusing since the report on medicinal uses is dealing with native plants of Greece[K]. Dioecious. Male and female plants must be grown if seed is required.

Propagation

Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in the autumn in a greenhouse[200]. It can also be sown in spring in a greenhouse in a sandy compost[K]. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots as soon as they are large enough to handle and grow them on for at least their first winter in a greenhouse. Plant out in the spring or early summer after the last expected frosts and give some protection in their first winter[K]. Division in spring or autumn[238]. Layering.

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

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
Ephedra altissimaHigh-climbing jointfir13
Ephedra americana andina 23
Ephedra ciliata 13
Ephedra distachyaSea Grape, Jointfir24
Ephedra equisetinaMuzei Ma Huang, Ma huang14
Ephedra gerardianaMa Huang, Gerard jointfir24
Ephedra intermediaZhong Ma Huang14
Ephedra majorMa Huang14
Ephedra nevadensisMormon Tea, Nevada jointfir33
Ephedra pachyclada 23
Ephedra sinicaMa Huang, Chinese ephedra14
Ephedra torreyanaMexican Tea, Torrey's jointfir23
Ephedra triandra 13
Ephedra trifurcaLongleaf Jointfir12
Ephedra viridisMormon Tea, Brigham Tea, Long Leaf Ephedra, Mountain Joint Fir, Mormon Tea, Ephedra23

 

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Expert comment

Author

Desf.

Botanical References

50200

Links / References

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Subject : Ephedra fragilis  
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