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Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera is a stem-less or very short-stemmed plant, growing approximately 80-100 cm tall, spreading by offsets and root sprouts. The leaves are lanceolate, thick and fleshy, green to grey-green, with a serrated margin. The flowers are produced on a spike up to 90 cm tall, each flower pendulous, with a yellow tubular corolla 2-3 cm long. The tissue in the center of the aloe leaf contains a gel which yields aloe gel or aloe vera gel.


A fast-growing tree, neem (azadirachta indica) can reach a height of about 15 to 20 meters (115-131 ft). The trunk is short, straight and has a diameter of 1.2 m (about 4 ft), wherein the branches spread out widely. Young leaves are reddish to purple in color and turn into dark green pinnate leaves on maturity. The white and fragrant flowers are arranged auxiliary in drooping panicles, about 25 cm in length. The smooth olive-like drupe fruit is elongated-oval to nearly roundish in shape.


Bamboo, botanically known as bambusa vulgaris, can be described as an open, clump-type bamboo species having lemon yellow culms, with green stripes and dark green leaves. The plant can grow up to a height of 12 meters, with an 8 cm thickness. New culms shoot up in mid-summer and attain full height in less than 60 days. The plant is native to the Himalayas, but is now cultivated widely throughout tropical Asia and America. It is also present in the regions ranging from Sierra Leone to South Nigeria and other African territories.


Bhringaraj is a creeping and moisture-loving herb. It has a short, flat or round stem and small white flowers on a long stalk. It grows 3" tall; the leaves are opposite and lance shaped. The roots of the pant are well developed, cylindrical and grayish in color. Floral heads are solitary, white in color, achene compressed, narrowly winged and 6-8 mm in diameter. The plant grows commonly in moist places all over the world, as a weed.


The name 'buckwheat' or "beech wheat" comes from the triangular seeds of the herb, which resemble the much larger seeds of the beechnut from the beech tree. Buckwheat is a short season crop that does well in poor acidic soils, but the soil must be well drained. Too much fertilizer, especially nitrogen, will greatly reduce yields. In hot climates, it can be grown only by sowing late, so that it will bloom in cooler weather. Buckwheat is sometimes used as a green manure, as a plant for erosion control, or as wildlife cover and feed.


Cardamom is an evergreen, perennial ginger-like plant, with thick rhizomes and erect stems, bearing pointed leaves. White flowers with a pink to violet striped lip are born in a loose spike in summers, followed by pale green to beige, 3-celled capsules or pods, containing 15-20 aromatic seeds. The small, brown-black sticky seeds are contained in three double rows, with about six seeds in each row. The seeds are pungent, warm and aromatic. Elettaria and Amomum are the two main genera of the ginger family that are named as forms of cardamom.


Papaya is a small, unbranched tree, with a single stem growing to 5-10 m tall, with the spirally arranged leaves. The lower trunk is conspicuously scarred with the leaf. The leaves are large, 50-70 cm diameter and deeply palmate lobed, with seven lobes. The fruit of the plant is cultivated by tropical people, as a breakfast fruit. The plant is native to the tropics of the Americas. In Mexico, it was cultivated many centuries before the emergence of the Mesoamerican classic cultures.


Cinnamon is the inner bark of a tropical evergreen tree. The cinnamon trees are about 10 to 15 meters high. The light brown, papery bark and leathery leaves are ovate-oblong in shape, with a length of 7 to 18 cm. The green flowers are arranged in panicles and have a distinct odor. The tree bears purple berries with a single seed. Cinnamon has a fragrant perfume and a sweet and aromatic taste. The tree is native to Sri Lanka, but grows plentifully in Malabar, Cochin-China, Sumatra, Eastern Islands, Brazil, Mauritius, India and Jamaica.

Bitter Oleander

Bitter oleander is a deciduous shrub or a small tree. It has a rough, pale brownish or grayish bark. The leaves are opposite, subsesile, elliptic or ovate-oblong and membranous. The white flowers are in terminal corymbose cymes, while the seeds are light brown or smoky in color. The fruit is thin and cylindrical, with two follicles attached together at distal ends. The herb grows throughout India, up to an altitude of 4,000 feet, with special abundance in the sub-Himalayan tract. It is considered as one of the most valuable medicinal products of India.


Ephedra is a shrub that grows about 25 cm to 50 cm high. It belongs to the family Ephedraceae and is found on sandy seashores, in temperate climates of both hemispheres. The plant has stamens and pistils on separate flowers. Its fruit has two carpels, with a single seed in each one of them. They are erect, with small leaves. The herb has green stems belonging to a range of species that is native to Central Asia.