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  Section: Edible Plant Species
 
 
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Edible Plant Species

 
     
 
Jubaea spectabilis H. B. & K. Palmae. COQUITO PALM. LITTLE COKERNUT.
A palm of Chile cultivated in South America.
The sap of this tree is boiled to the consistency of treacle and forms the miel de Raima, palm honey, of Chile, a considerable article of trade, being much esteemed for domestic use as sugar. The trees are felled and the crown of leaves is immediately cut off, when the sap begins to flow and continues for several months, provided a thin slice is shaved off the top each morning, until the tree is exhausted. Each tree yields about 90 gallons. The nuts are used by the Chilean confectioners in the preparation of sweetmeats and have a pleasant, nutty taste. The nuts of the Coquito palm are often called little cokernuts.


Juglans baccata Linn. Juglandeae. WALNUT.
West Indies.
The nuts are edible and furnish an oil. They are very rich in starch.


J. cinerea Linn. BUTTERNUT.
Eastern North America.
The butternut was called by the Narragansett Indians wussoquat, and the oil from the nut was used for seasoning their aliments. The nuts were used by the Indians to thicken their pottage. The immature fruit is sometimes used as a pickle and is most excellent. The kernel of the ripe nut is esteemed by those who do not object to its strong and oily taste. The tree is occasionally grown as a shade tree and for its nuts. In 1813, a sample of butternut sugar was sent to the Massachusetts Society for the Promotion of Agriculture.


J. nigra Linn. BLACK WALNUT.
A tree valued for its timber, common in the western states of northeast America.
The kernel of the nut is sweet and less oily than the butternut but greatly inferior to the Madeira nut. It is eaten and was a prized food of the Indians.


J. regia Linn. ENGLISH WALNUT. MADEIRA NUT. PERSIAN WALNUT.
This tree extends from Greece and Asia Minor over Lebanon and Persia to the Himalayas.
It is abundant in Kashmir, Nepal and neighboring countries and is cultivated in Europe and elsewhere. It is referred to by Theophrastus under the name of karuon. According to Pliny, it was introduced into Italy from Persia, but it is mentioned as existing in Italy by Varro, who was born B. C. 116. In many parts of Spain, France, Italy and Germany, the nut forms an important article of food to the people, and in some parts of France considerable quantities of oil are expressed from the kernels to be used in cooking and as a drying oil in the arts. In Circassia, sugar is said to be made from the sap. There are many varieties; those of the province of Khosistan in Persia are much esteemed and are sent in great quantities to India. In Georgia, they are of a fine quality. In North China, an almost huskless variety occurs. In France, there is a variety called Titmouse walnut because the shell is so thin that birds, especially the titmouse, can break it and eat the kernel. In the United States, it is called English walnut and two varieties succeed well in Virginia. In western New York, it is occasionally seen in lawns.


J. rupestris Engelm.
Western North America.
The small nuts are sweet and edible.


J. sieboldiana Maxim. JAPANESE WALNUT.
Japan.
The small nuts are of good flavor, borne in large clusters, a dozen or more in one bunch.


Juniperus bermudiana Linn. Coniferae (Cupressaceae).v BERMUDA CEDAR.
Bermuda Islands.
In 1609, Sir Thomas Gates and Sir George Sommers were wrecked on the Bermudas and in their account say "we have a kinde of Berne upon the Cedar tree, verie pleasant to eat." In Newes from Barmudas, 1612, it is said, " here are an infinite number of Cedar trees (fairest I think in the world) and those bring forth a verie sweete berrie and wholesome to eat."


J. communis Linn. JUNIPER.
North temperate and arctic regions.
The berries are used by distillers to flavor gin. The ripe berries were formerly used in England as a substitute for pepper. In many parts of Germany, the berries are used as a culinary spice. In Sweden, they are made into a conserve, also prepared in a beverage and in some places are roasted and used as a coffee substitute. In France, a kind of beer called genevrette is made by fermenting a decoction of equal parts of juniperberries and barley. In Germany, juniper is used for flavoring sauerkraut. In Kamaon, India, the berries are added to spirits distilled from barley. In western North America, the berries are an Indian food.


J. drupacea Labill. HABBEL. PLUM JUNIPER.
Greece, Asia Minor and Syria.
The sweet, edible fruit is highly esteemed throughout the Orient, according to Mueller.


J. occidentalis Hook. CALIFORNIA JUNIPER.
Western North America.
The plant bears a large and tuberculated berry, sweet and nutritious, which has, however, a resinous taste. The berries are largely consumed by the Indians of Arizona and New Mexico.


J. pachyphlaea Torr. SWEET-FRUITED JUNIPER.
Mexico.
The berries are purplish, globose, half an inch in diameter and have a sweetish and palatable pulp.


J. recurva Buch.-Ham. DROOPING JUNIPER.
Himalayan region.
In India, the sprigs are used in the distillation of spirits. The shrub is sacred and the resinous twigs are used for incense. This species is used in India in the preparation of an intoxicating liquor and for making yeast.


J. tetragona Schlecht. MEXICAN JUNIPER.
Mexico.
The berries are half an inch in diameter, and the Indians are said to use them as food.
 
     
 
 
     



     
 
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