Monkshood (An Endangered Plant). It's Common Names, Description And The Plant's Disease

964 words - 4 pages

Monkshood is a name of an endangered, beautiful, but extremely dangerous plant. It belongs to the Buttercup Family (Ranunculaceae). This plant is also known as Blue Rocket, Friar's hat, Helmet flower, Mouse bane, wolf bane, etc. Its scientific name is Aconitum napellus. It comes from a Greek term "En Akonias" which means, "growing on bare rocks". Most of this plant's names are derived from the extraordinary shape of this plant's large flower. They are usually of deep-blue, blue purple or sometimes even blue mauve and are about 1 inch in length. . The seed needs moist storage at 41 degrees for six weeks to overcome dormancy. This plant reproduces through seeds and tubers with a germination period of twenty days. The plant is totally dependent upon bees for fertilization. The flowers are pollinated when bumblebees pry open the blossom to collect nectar and pollen It takes nearly about three to four years for its hood shaped flower to bloom. Monkshood is an erect, slender leafy plant. Its leaves are toothed and deeply lobed. The upper two petals of its flower are concealed and the lower three are either small or not present. Their deep blue helmet shaped flowers is arranged in long terminal spikes on stems and grow singularly. Their stems range from about 1 to 4 feet in length.Monkshood is found on shallow or partially shaded cliff, and is also found at high elevation headwater. These plants also need moist, humus rich soil. In cooler climate Monkshood can grow in full sun, but they need a lot of water. Monkshood sites are often associated with cold air drainage or cold ground water flow out of bedrock. They usually become prominent in the month of June through September. This plant is extremely toxic and contains a poison called "Aconite". Aconite is a very deadly poison that kills a person by cardiac failure. Even a small dose can be lethal. If ingested there are a lot of symptoms. After a few minutes of ingestion of this plant there is a burning sensation in the mouth and tingling over the whole body. Following it is sweating, accompanied by shivering and an intense feeling of cold. Then there is abdominal pain nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea and marked salivination. In the end the limbs become numb and breathing becomes shallow and slow. Finally, there is collapse and death which occurs after only twenty minutes A person can get poisoned by this plant, just by holding it in moist hands for a while. Especially during winter the roots of this plants are very poisonous. It is also used for remedies, but doctors should only do it as it is highly potent drug and can be useful one as well if used in a safe way. Garden monkshood is the source of a medical drug. Once it was also used in the treatment of Rheumatic and Neuralgia. In ancient times people have used this plant to eat and attempt suicide. It was also used as poison to...

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