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Valeriana sitchensis - Bong.

Common Name American Valerian, Sitka valerian
Family Valerianaceae
USDA hardiness Coming soon
Known Hazards Some caution is advised with the use of this plant. At least one member of the genus is considered to be poisonous raw[161] and V. officinalis is a powerful nervine and sedative that can become habit-forming.
Habitats Moist open or wooded places at mid or upper elevations in the mountains, often in wet meadows[60].
Range Western N. America - Alaska to California.
Edibility Rating    (1 of 5)
Other Uses    (1 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (3 of 5)
Care (info)
Moist Soil Full sun
Valeriana sitchensis American Valerian, Sitka valerian


commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Wsiegmund
Valeriana sitchensis American Valerian, Sitka valerian
commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Wsiegmund

 

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Summary


Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of flower
Valeriana sitchensis is a PERENNIAL growing to 1.2 m (4ft). The species is dioecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but only one sex is to be found on any one plant so both male and female plants must be grown if seed is required). and is pollinated by Insects.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils. Suitable pH: mildly acid, neutral and basic (mildly alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers moist soil.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map

Synonyms

Plant Habitats

Woodland Garden Sunny Edge; Dappled Shade;

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Root  Seed
Edible Uses:

Root - cooked. A strong flavour, it needs to be steamed for 24 hours[172]. Seed - parched[172].

References   More on Edible Uses

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Antispasmodic  Carminative  Diuretic  Eczema  Hypnotic  Nervine  Sedative  Stimulant


Valerian is a well-known and frequently used medicinal herb that has a long and proven history of efficacy. It is noted especially for its effect as a tranquilliser and nervine, particularly for those people suffering from nervous overstrain[4, 222]. Valerian has been shown to encourage sleep, improve sleep quality and reduce blood pressure[254]. It is also used internally in the treatment of painful menstruation, cramps, hypertension, irritable bowel syndrome etc[238, 254]. It should not be prescribed for patients with liver problems[238]. Externally, it is used to treat eczema, ulcers and minor injuries[238]. The root is antispasmodic, carminative, diuretic, hypnotic, powerfully nervine, sedative and stimulant[4, 7, 9, 14, 21, 46, 147, 165, 192, 218]. The active ingredients are called valepotriates, research has confirmed that these have a calming effect on agitated people, but are also a stimulant in cases of fatigue[222]. The roots of 2 year old plants are harvested in the autumn once the leaves have died down and are used fresh or dried[4, 9, 238]. The fresh root is about 3 times as effective as roots dried at 40° (the report does not specify if this is centigrade or fahrenheit), whilst temperatures above 82° destroy the active principle in the root[240]. Use with caution[21, 238], see the notes above on toxicity.

References   More on Medicinal Uses

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Other Uses

Incense

The dried root has been used as an incense[257].

Special Uses

References   More on Other Uses

Cultivation details

We have very little information on this species and do not know if it will be hardy in Britain, though judging by its native range it should succeed outdoors in many parts of the country. The following notes are based on the general needs of the genus. Succeeds in ordinary garden soil[1]. Dioecious, male and female plants must be grown if seed is required.

References   Carbon Farming Information and Carbon Sequestration Information

Temperature Converter

Type a value in the Celsius field to convert the value to Fahrenheit:

Fahrenheit:

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Plant Propagation

Seed - sow spring in a cold frame and only just cover the seed because it requires light for germination[200]. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and plant out into their permanent positions in the summer if sufficient growth has been made. If the plants are too small to plant out, grow them on in the greenhouse or frame for their first winter and plant them out early in the following summer. Division in spring. Larger divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions. We have found that it is best to pot up smaller divisions and grow them on in light shade in a greenhouse or cold frame until they are growing away well. Plant them out in the summer or the following spring.

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status :

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameHabitHeightHardinessGrowthSoilShadeMoistureEdibleMedicinalOther
Centranthus macrosiphon Annual0.6 -  LMHNDM20 
Centranthus ruberRed Valerian, Fox's Brush, Jupiter's BeardPerennial0.9 5-8 MLMHNDM211
Fedia cornucopiae Annual0.2 -  LMHNDM20 
Nardostachys grandifloraSpikenardPerennial0.3 -  LMHSNM133
Patrinia scabiosifoliaEastern Valerian, Scabious PatriniaPerennial0.6 5-8 FLMNM13 
Patrinia triloba Perennial0.5 -  LMHSNM102
Patrinia villosa Perennial1.0 -  LMHSNM11 
Valeriana amurensis Perennial0.0 -  LMHNM10 
Valeriana capitataValerian, Captiate valerianPerennial0.6 0-0  LMHNMWe111
Valeriana celtica Perennial0.3 -  LMHNM112
Valeriana ciliataTobacco RootPerennial0.8 -  LMHNM10 
Valeriana dioicaMarsh Valerian, Woods valerianPerennial0.3 0-0  LMHNMWe11 
Valeriana fauriei Perennial1.0 -  LMHNM01 
Valeriana hardwickii Perennial1.5 -  LMHNM032
Valeriana jatamansiIndian ValerianPerennial0.5 -  LMHNM031
Valeriana obovataTobacco RootPerennial1.2 -  LMHNM21 
Valeriana occidentaliswestern valerianPerennial1.0 -  LMHNM11 
Valeriana officinalisValerian, Garden valerianPerennial1.5 4-8  LMHNM233
Valeriana phu Perennial0.4 -  LMHSNDM213
Valeriana sambucifolia Perennial1.5 4-8  LMHSNM232
Valeriana toluccana Perennial0.0 -  LMHNM223
Valeriana uliginosaMountain ValerianPerennial1.0 -  LMHNMWe02 
Valerianella carinataKeeled-Fruited Cornsalad, European cornsaladAnnual0.3 0-0  LMHNDM20 
Valerianella chenopodifolia Annual0.6 -  LMHNM20 
Valerianella eriocarpaItalian Corn SaladAnnual0.4 -  LMHNDM30 
Valerianella locustaCorn Salad, Lewiston cornsaladAnnual0.3 4-8  LMHNDM40 
Valerianella radiataBeaked CornsaladAnnual0.6 0-0  LMHNDM200

Growth: S = slow M = medium F = fast. Soil: L = light (sandy) M = medium H = heavy (clay). pH: A = acid N = neutral B = basic (alkaline). Shade: F = full shade S = semi-shade N = no shade. Moisture: D = dry M = Moist We = wet Wa = water.

 

Expert comment

Author

Bong.

Botanical References

60

Links / References

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