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Abelmoschus_moschatus - Medik.

Common Name Musk Mallow,Musk Okra
Family Malvaceae
USDA hardiness 8-11
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Open places in Nepal at elevations of 600 - 1100 metres[272]. Flat areas, valleys, stream sides and scrub slopes in western and southern China[266].
Range S.E. Asia - Himalayas to China and Vietnam.
Edibility Rating    (2 of 5)
Other Uses    (0 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (3 of 5)
Care
Half Hardy Moist Soil Full sun
Abelmoschus_moschatus Musk Mallow,Musk Okra


Abelmoschus_moschatus Musk Mallow,Musk Okra

 

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Summary


Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of flower
Abelmoschus_moschatus is a PERENNIAL growing to 2 m (6ft) by 1 m (3ft 3in) at a fast rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 9 and is frost tender. It is in flower from July to September, and the seeds ripen from August to October. The species is hermaphrodite (has both male and female organs) and is pollinated by Insects.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers moist soil.

Synonyms

Hibiscus abelmoschus.

Habitats

Edible Uses

Young leaves and shoots - cooked in soups[183, 272]. Used as a vegetable[238]. The leaves are also used to clarify sugar[183]. Unripe seedpods - cooked as a vegetable in much the same way as okra (A. esculentus)[183, 238, 272]. Seed - cooked[272]. It is fried or roasted and has a flavour similar to sesame seeds[272]. The seed is also used as a flavouring for liqueurs or to scent coffee[183, 238]. An essential oil is obtained from the plant and is used to flavour baked goods, ice cream, sweets and soft drinks[183]. Root[183]. No more details are given, though the root is likely to have a bland flavour and a fibrous texture.

Medicinal Uses

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An emulsion made from the seed is antispasmodic and is especially effective in the digestive system[4, 238]. The seeds are also chewed as a nervine, stomachic and to sweeten the breath[4, 238]. They are also said to be aphrodisiac[4, 238]. The seeds are valued medicinally for their diuretic, demulcent and stomachic properties. They are also said to be stimulant, antiseptic, cooling, tonic, carminative and aphrodisiac. A paste of the bark is applied to cuts, wounds and sprains[272]. The essential oil is used in aromatherapy for the treatment of depression and anxiety[238]. It is also applied externally to treat cramp, poor circulation and aching joints[238].

Other Uses

An essential oil is obtained from the plant[238]. It is used as a food flavouring and in perfumery as a musk substitute[238]. However, it has been known to cause photosensitivity so this use has been largely discontinued[238]. An oil obtained from the seed contains 18.9% linoleic acid[240]. The oil is f high econmic value[266]. Total yields of oil are not given[K]. The seeds are used as an insecticide[4, 238]. Another report says that extracts of the fruits and upper parts of the plant show insecticidal activity[240]. A fibre is obtained from the stem bark[238]. It is used to make ropes[272]. A mucilage obtained from the roots is used as a size for paper[238].

Cultivation details

Easily grown in a rich well-drained soil in a sunny position[238]. Tolerates a pH in the range 6 to 7.8. This species is not hardy in the colder areas of the country, it tolerates temperatures down to about -5°c and can be grown outdoors in the milder areas of the country[238]. The plant grows as a shrub in frost-free climates but is usually cut back to the ground in British winters. So long as these winters are not too cold, however, it can usually be grown as a herbaceous perennial with new shoots being produced freely from the root-stock. These flower in the summer[238]. It is probably wise to apply a good mulch to the roots in the autumn[K]. It is best to cut back the stems to about 15cm long in the spring even if they have not been killed back by the frost[238]. This will ensure an abundance of new growth and plenty of flowers in the summer. The musk mallow is widely cultivated in tropical climates for its many uses[238]. There is at least one named form, selected for its ornamental value. 'Mischief' is somewhat smaller than the species, reaching a height of 50cm[238].

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Propagation

Seed - sow April in a greenhouse. The seed germinates best at a temperature around 24 - 24°c[238]. When large enough to handle, prick out the seedlings into individual pots of rich soil and plant them out after the last expected frosts[K]. The seed can also be sown in situ in late April in areas with warm summers. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, July in a frame[238].

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

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

 

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Expert comment

Author

Medik.

Botanical References

266272

Links / References

For a list of references used on this page please go here

Readers comment

Hong Duong   Sun Mar 25 2007

Can anybody help me find suppliers of Abelmoschus moschatus Medik. seeds for cultivation purpose ? Please reply directly to dxb@secoin.vn.

dr.j.p.pathak   Sat Mar 28 2009

ablemoschus muschotus contect as farmar

nitisha   Tue Jun 9 2009

this website is pretty good and i love this website

neeraj   Tue Sep 8 2009

sir pls send the same detail about plant sanjeevani(selaginela bryopteris) thanks

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