Chaerophyllum bulbosum Linn. Umbelliferae. PARSNIP
CHERVIL. TURNIP-ROOTED CHERVIL.
Europe and Asia Minor.
In Bavaria, this vegetable is found growing wild
but is said to have been first introduced from Siberia. Burnett alludes
to it as deleterious, but Haller affirms that the Kalmucks eat the roots
with their fish and commend them as a nutritive and agreeable food.
Booth says it is a native of France and, although known to British
gardeners since its introduction in 1726, it is only within the last few
years that attention has been directed to its culture as an esculent
vegetable. In size and shape, the root attains the dimensions of a small
Dutch carrot. It is outwardly of a grey color, but when cut the flesh is
white, mealy and by no means unpleasant to the taste. F. Webster,
consul at Munich, Bavaria, in 1864, sent some seed to this country and
says: "The great value of this vegetable, as an acquisition to an
American gardener, is not only its deliciousness to the epicure but the
earliness of its maturity, fully supplying the place of potatoes." The seed
is now offered in our seed catalogs. The wild plant is described by
Camerarius, 1588 and by Clusius, 1601, and is also named by
Bauhin, 1623. As a cultivated plant, it seems to have been first noted
about 1855, when the root is described as seldom so large as a
hazelnut, while in 1861 it had attained the size and shape of the French
round carrot. This chervil appeared in American seed catalogs in 1884,
or earlier, and was described by Burr for American gardens in 1863. It
was known in England in 1726 but was not under culture.
C. tuberosum Royle.
In the Himalayas, the tuberous roots are eaten and are called sham.
Chamaedorea elegans Mart. Palmae.
The young, unexpanded flower-spikes are used as a
C. tepejilote Liebm.
The flowers, when still enclosed in the spathes, are highly
esteemed as a culinary vegetable.
Chamaerops humilis Linn. Palmae. DWARF FAN-PALM.
West Mediterranean countries.
The young shoots or suckers from the
bottom of the plant, called cafaglioni, are eaten by the Italians. In
Barbary, the lower part of the young stems and the roots are eaten by
Chelidonium sinense DC. Papaveraceae.
The leaves were eaten as a food in China in the fourteenth
Chenopodium album Linn. Chenopodiaceae. LAMB'S QUARTER.
PIGWEED. WHITE GOOSE-FOOT.
Temperate and tropical regions.
Remnants of this plant have been
found in the early lake villages of Switzerland. In the Hebrides, it was
observed by Lightfoot to be boiled and eaten as greens. In the United
States, it is used as a spinach. The young, tender plants are collected
by the Navajoes, the Pueblo Indians of New Mexico, all the tribes of
Arizona, the Diggers of California and the Utahs, and boiled as a
spinach or are eaten raw. The seeds are gathered by many tribes,
ground into a flour and made into a bread or mush.
C. ambrosioides Linn. MEXICAN TEA.
Temperate and tropical regions.
This herb is called in Mexican epazolt.
The plant is cooked and eaten by the natives. It was called at Verona, in
1745, the allemand because drunk in infusion by the Germans. It
seems to be indigenous to tropical America.
C. auricomum Lindl. AUSTRALIAN SPINACH.
This plant is a native of the interior of Australia and has
lately come into use in England as a substitute for spinach, according
to J. Smith. Mueller calls this spinach palatable and nutritious.
C. bonus-henricus Linn. ALL GOOD. FAT HEN. GOOD-KINGHENRY.
GOOSEFOOT. MERCURY. WILD SPINACH.
Europe, now sparingly naturalized around dwellings in the United
Under the curious names of fat-hen and good-king-Henry, this
plant was formerly largely cultivated in the gardens in England as a
potherb, and even in the beginning of the present century was still
esteemed in Lincolnshire and some of the Midland counties but is now
little used. Lightfoot says, in Scotland, the young leaves in the spring
are often eaten as greens and are very good. Glasspoole says, in
Lincolnshire, it was preferred to garden spinach, and the young shoots
used to be peeled and eaten as asparagus. The plant is now but rarely
cultivated. Gerarde speaks of it in 1597 as a wild plant only, while Ray,
1686, refers to it as frequently among vegetables. Bryant, 1783, says:
"formerly cultivated in English gardens but of late neglected, although
certainly of sufficient merit. In 1807, Miller's Gardener's Dictionary"
says it is generally in gardens about Boston in Lincolnshire and is there
preferred to spinach. It cannot ever have received very general culture
as it is only indicated as a wayside plant by Tragus, 1552; Lobel, 1570
and 1576; Camerarius, 1586; Dalechamp, 1587; Matthiolus, 1598;
and Chabraeus, 1677. Its value as an antiscorbutic finds recognition in
its names, bonus Henricus and tota bona.
C. capitatum Aschers. ELITE. STRAWBERRY BLITE.
Northern and southern regions.
Gerarde says: "it is one of the potherbes
that be unsavory or without taste, whose substance is waterish." The
fruit, though insipid, is said formerly to have been employed in cookery.
The leaves have a spinach-like flavor and may be used as a substitute
for it. Unger says even the blite or strawberry spinach finds consumers
for its insipid, strawberry-like fruit. The plant is found indigenous and
common from Western New York to Lake Superior and northward.
Blitum capitatum, if Linnaeus's synonymy can be trusted, was known
to Bauhin, 1623, and by Ray, 1686. Miller's Gardener's Dictionary
refers it to J. Bauhin who received the plant in 1651. The species was,
during this time, little known outside of botanical gardens.
C. quinoa Willd. PETTY RICE. QUINOA.
This plant, indigenous to the Pacific slopes of the
Andes, constituted the most important article of food of the inhabitants
of New Granada, Peru and Chile at the time of the discovery of America,
and at the present day is still extensively cultivated on account of its
seeds, which are used extensively by the poorer inhabitants. There are
several varieties, of which the white is cultivated in Europe as a spinach
plant, rather than for its seeds. However prepared, the seed, says
Thompson, is unpalatable to strangers. Gibbon, who saw the plant in
Bolivia, says that when boiled like rice and eaten with milk, the seeds
are very savory. Seeds from France but originally from Peru, were
distributed from the United States Patent Office in 1854. Garcilasso de
la Vegal says it was called quinua by the natives of Peru and mujo by
the Spaniards. He says: "Both the Indians and the Spanish eat the
tender leaf in their dishes, because they are savory and very wholesome.
They also eat the grain in the soups, prepared in various ways." A
black-seeded variety, cultivated in gardens, is mentioned by Feuille, in
Peru, preceding 1725. It was introduced into France in 1785 but has
not had very extended use. Molina says in Chile there is a variety called
dahue by the Indians which has greyish leaves and produces a white
grain. The grain of the quinua serves for making a very pleasant
stomachic beverage; that of the dahue, on being boiled, lengthens out
in the form of worms and is excellent in soup. The leaves are also eaten
and are tender and of an agreeable taste.
Chiogenes (Gaultheria) serpyllifolia Salisb. Vacciniaceae
(Ericaceae). CREEPING SNOWBERRY.
North America and Japan.
The berry is white, edible, juicy and of an
agreeable, subacid taste with a pleasant checkerberry flavor. The
Indians of Maine use the leaves of the creeping snowberry for tea.
Chloranthus inconspicuus Sw. Chloranthaceae.
China and Japan.
This plant furnishes the flowers which serve to scent
some sorts of tea, particularly an expensive sort called chu-lan-cha.
Chlorogalum pomeridianum Kunth. Liliaceae. AMOLE.
SOAPPLANT. WILD POTATO.
The egg-shaped bulb is one to three inches in diameter.
Cooking eliminates all the acrid properties, rendering the bulb good,
Chondodendron tomentosum Ruiz & Pav. Menispermaceae. WILD
This plant is called by the Peruvians wild grape on account of the
form of the fruit and its acid and not unpleasant flavor.
Chondrilla juncea Linn. Compositae.
Southern Europe and adjoining Asia.
This plant is mentioned by
Dorotheus as good for cooking and for the stomach; it is enumerated by
Pliny as among the esculent plants of Egypt.
C. prenanthoides Vill.
East Mediterranean countries and mountains of Yemen.
This plant is
enumerated by Pliny as among the esculents of Egypt. Forskal says it is
eaten raw in Yemen.
Chondrus crispus Lyngb. Rhodophyceae. CARRAGEEN. IRISH
MOSS. PEARL MOSS.
This alga is found on the western coast of Ireland, England and Europe
and also on the eastern coast of the United States.
It has been used as a
food and medicine by the Irish peasants from time immemorial. It is
collected for the market and is largely used as a food for invalids under
the names carrageen, Irish moss and pearl moss.
Choretrum candollei F. Muell. Santalaceae. WILD CURRANTS.
A shrub bearing greenish-red berries which are called wild currants in
New South Wales.
They have a pleasant, acid taste combined with a
certain degree of astringency. Mixed with other fruit, they are used for
preserves and in the preparation of cooling, acid beverages.
Chorispora tenella DC. Cruciferae.
The leaves of this plant are described as a good, early
salad by Pallas in his Travels in Russia.
Chrysanthemum balsamita Linn. Compositae. ALECOST.
West Mediterranean countries.
This plant is common in every cottage
garden in England, where it was introduced in 1568. The leaves
possess a strong, balsamic odor and are sometimes put in salads but it
has ceased to be grown for culinary purposes and even in France is
only occasionally used. The leaves were formerly used in England to
flavor ale and negus, hence the name alecost. In the United States, it is
mentioned by Burr, 1863, who names one variety. It is grown in
C. leucanthemum Linn. MARGUERITE. OX-EYE DAISY. WHITE
Johnson says the leaves may be eaten as salad. The plant is
the well-known flower of our fields, where it has become naturalized
C. segetum Linn. CORN CHRYSANTHEMUM. CORN MARIGOLD.
Europe, north Africa and western Asia.
The stalks and leaves, "as
Dioscorides saith, are eaten as other pot herbes are." In northern Japan
and China, Miss Bird describes a cultivated form of chrysanthemum as
occurring frequently in patches and says the petals are partially boiled
and are eaten with vinegar as a dainty.
Chrysobalanus ellipticus Soland. Rosaceae (Chrysobalanaceae).
This plant bears a damson-sized fruit with a black, thin
skin and is eaten.
C. icaco Linn. COCO PLUM.
African and American tropics.
This tree-like shrub, with its fruit similar
to the damson, grows wild as well as cultivated in the forests along the
shores of South America and in Florida. Browne says in Jamaica the
fruit is perfectly insipid but contains a large nut inclosing a kernel of
very delicious flavor. The fruits in the West Indies, prepared with sugar,
form a favorite conserve with the Spanish colonists, and large quantities
are annually exported from Cuba. On the African coast it occurs from
the Senegal to the Congo. The fruit is eaten by the natives of Angola
and, according to Montiero, is like a round, black-purple plum,
tasteless and astringent. Sabine says: "the fruit is about the size of an
Orleans plum but is rounder, of a yellow color, with a flesh soft and
juicy, the flavor having much resemblance to that of noyau."
Chrysophyllum africanum A. DC. Sapotaceae.
This is a tall tree of Sierra Leone, whose fruit is in
C. argenteum Jacq.
The fruit, the size of a plum, contains a soft, bluish, edible
C. cainito Linn. STAR APPLE.
West Indies This tree has been cultivated from time immemorial in the
West Indies but nowhere is found wild. It seems to have been observed
by Cieza de Leon in his travels in Peru, 1532-50, and is called
caymitos. Lunan says some trees bear fruit with a purple and some
with a white skin and pulp, which when soft is like jelly, with milky
veins and has a sweet and pleasant taste.
C. glabrum Jacq.
The fruit is blue, of the form and size of a small olive and is
seldom eaten except by children.
C. michino H. B. & K.
The fruit is yellow outside, whitish and clammy inside
and is very grateful.
C. microcarpum Sw.
The fruit is the size of a gooseberry, of a very sweet, delicious
C. monopyrenum Sw. DAMSON PLUM OF JAMAICA.
The fruit is oval and about the size of a Bergamot pear. It
contains a white, clammy juice when fresh, which, after being kept a few
days, becomes sweet, and delicious. It frequently contains four or five
black seeds about the size of pumpkin seeds.
C. obovatum Sabine.
The fruit is the size of an apple, with a short apex and is
much inferior to the star apple of the West Indies.
C. pruniferum F. Muell.
The fruit is of a plum-like appearance and is edible.
C. roxburghii G. Don. PITAKARA. STAR APPLE.
The fruit is greedily eaten by the natives. It is the size of
a small crab, yellow when ripe, smooth and is greedily eaten although
insipid. The pulp is tolerably firm but is exceedingly clammy, adhering
to the lips or knife with great tenacity.
Chrysosplenium altemifolium Linn. Saxifrageae. GOLDEN
Europe, northern Asia and North America.
The leaves are eaten as a
salad in the Vosges Mountains.
C. oppositifolium Linn.
Europe, northern Asia and East Indies.
In some countries, this plant is
eaten as a salad.6 The leaves are eaten in salad and soup.