The Plant Detective

The Plant Detective
11:19 am
Mon December 23, 2013

Farewell Flora Delaterre

Intrepid phytomedicinal investigator, Flora Delaterre has decided to retire. "The Plant Detective" will have its last on-air broadcast on MTPR on December 28, 2013.  But the program will live on via podcasts and on demand archives.  Read more from Flora below. 

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Ecologically challenged incense and medicine
8:00 am
Fri December 20, 2013

Frankincense: Tears of a Tree

December 21st & 23rd, 2013:For millenia throughout the Arabian Peninsula and North Africa, resinous nuggets from the frankincense tree have made fragrant and insecticidal smoke when burned. Frankincense is considered sacred as well as medicinal, but today, the trees aren't reproducing.

http://www.floradelaterre.com/

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Landmark Anti-Psychotic Medication
8:00 am
Fri December 13, 2013

Rauwolfia, a.k.a. Snakeroot

December 14th & 16th, 2013: The twisted root of the Asian plant Rauwolfia is a traditional Ayurvedic remedy for hypertension and insanity. As the modern anti-psychotic and blood pressure drug Reserpine, 1970s studies linked it to serious side effects, but recently, it's made a comeback as a valuable hypertensive. 

http://www.floradelaterre.com/

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For Some, It's Gentler On The Stomach Than Aspirin
8:00 am
Fri December 6, 2013

Willow: Tree Bark That Begat Aspirin

December 7th & 9th, 2013: Willow, the original source of aspirin, is still prescribed by herbalists, particularly for urinary tract infections and muscle pain.

http://www.floradelaterre.com/

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Take It Easy with the Licorice Candygrams
8:00 am
Fri November 29, 2013

Licorice II: Resemblence to Anise Is Purely Intentional

November 30th & December 2nd, 2013: The root of the licorice shrub treats digestive problems, inflammation, ulcers, colds and many other ailments, but it creates problems when consumed in excess, raising blood pressure and causing electrolyte imbalances. American candy manufacturers substitute anise seed flavoring.

http://www.floradelaterre.com/

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Glycyrrhizic Acid's Sweet Benefits
8:00 am
Fri November 22, 2013

Licorice I: Never Mind the Spoonful of Sugar

November 23rd & 25th, 2013: Licorice is an important shrub around the world, treating many ailments. The chemicals contained in licorice are thought to decrease swelling, thin mucus secretions, decrease cough, and increase the chemicals in our body that heal ulcers.

http://www.floradelaterre.com/

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"Toothache Tree"
8:00 am
Fri November 15, 2013

Prickly Ash

November 16th & 18th, 2013: The leaves, bark (sans thorns), root bark and berries of Prickly Ash are medicinal, soothing sore throat and skin inflammation, increasing saliva, and improving blood flow and digestion. North Americans used it to numb toothache.

http://www.floradelaterre.com/

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The Plant Detective
8:00 am
Fri November 8, 2013

Henbane, Shakespeare's Little Helper

November 9th & 11th, 2013: Henbane is the source of the drug hyoscyamine, the alkaloid that put Juliet to sleep and poisoned Hamlet's father. In proper doses, it helps relieve gastrointestinal disorders, heart problems, and symptoms of Parkinson's Disease.

http://www.floradelaterre.com/

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a.k.a. Belladonna
10:11 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

Deadly Nightshade

November 2nd & 4th, 2013: Belladonna, or deadly nightshade, is reputed to have poisoned Emperor Augustus, but in spite of its name, the scopolamine nightshade contains is medicinal, inducing sleep and calming motion sickness. http://www.floradelaterre.com/

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The Plant Detective
8:00 am
Fri October 25, 2013

Datura: A "Witches' Weed"

Credit Anna Veltfort

October 26th & 28th, 2013: Datura. Also known as  jimsonweed and moonflower, datura is medicinal. In potentially fatal doses, it's hallucinogenic. Datura isn't safe for experimentation.

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