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Malus_fusca - (Raf.)Schneid.

Common Name Oregon Crab, Oregon crab apple
Family Rosaceae
USDA hardiness 5-9
Known Hazards All members of this genus contain the toxin hydrogen cyanide in their seeds and possibly also in their leaves, but not in their fruits. Hydrogen cyanide is the substance that gives almonds their characteristic taste but it should only be consumed in very small quantities. Apple seeds do not normally contain very high quantities of hydrogen cyanide but, even so, should not be consumed in very large quantities. In small quantities, hydrogen cyanide has been shown to stimulate respiration and improve digestion, it is also claimed to be of benefit in the treatment of cancer. In excess, however, it can cause respiratory failure and even death.
Habitats Moist woods, stream banks, swamps and bogs in deep rich soils[60, 82], usually occurring in dense pure thickets[229].
Range Western N. America - Alaska to California.
Edibility Rating    (3 of 5)
Other Uses    (0 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (2 of 5)
Care
Fully Hardy Moist Soil Semi-shade Full sun
Malus_fusca Oregon Crab, Oregon crab apple


http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Malus_rivularis_145-8798.jpg
Malus_fusca Oregon Crab, Oregon crab apple
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jim-sf

 

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Summary


Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of lolypop
Malus_fusca is a deciduous Tree growing to 12 m (39ft 4in) at a slow rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 6 and is not frost tender. It is in flower in May. The species is hermaphrodite (has both male and female organs) and is pollinated by Insects.
It is noted for attracting wildlife.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in heavy clay soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil.

Synonyms

M. rivularis.

Habitats

Edible Uses

Fruit - raw or cooked[11, 101]. Up to 2cm in diameter[229]. An agreeable sub-acid taste, it can be eaten out of hand or made into jellies, preserves etc[183]. The fruit can be left on the tree until there have been some autumn frosts, this will soften the fruit and make it somewhat less acid[K]. The fruit is rich in pectin so it can be added to pectin-low fruits when making jams or jellies[183, 257]. Pectin is also said to protect the body against radiation[201].

Medicinal Uses

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Oregon crab was employed medicinally by several native North American Indian tribes who used it to treat a variety of complaints[257]. In particular, it gained a reputation with some tribes as a heal-all, especially useful for treating any of the internal organs[257]. It is little, if at all, used in modern herbalism. The trunk, bark and inner bark are antirheumatic, astringent, blood purifier, cardiac, diuretic, laxative and tonic[257]. A decoction has been used in the treatment of coughs, stomach ulcers, dysentery, diarrhoea, rheumatism and consumption[257]. The shredded bark has been used to treat blood spitting[257]. A poultice of the chewed bark has been applied to wounds[257]. An infusion of the bark is used as an eyewash[257]. a decoction of the bark is used as a wash on cuts, eczema and other skin problems[257]. An infusion of the bark, combined with wild cherry bark (Prunus sp.) has been used as a cure-all tonic[257]. The juice scraped from the peeled trunk has been used as an eye medicine[257]. The soaked leaves have been chewed in the treatment of lung problems[257].

Other Uses

The fruit is a source of pectin[183]. Wood - hard, close grained, durable. Used for mallets, tool handles and bearings[11, 82, 99, 101, 226].

Cultivation details

An easily grown plant, it succeeds in most fertile soils, preferring a moisture retentive well-drained loamy soil[1, 200]. Grows well in heavy clay soils. Prefers a sunny position but succeeds in partial shade, though it fruits less well in such a situation[200]. A very ornamental plant[1], it is slow-growing in the wild[229]. Hybridizes freely with other members of this genus[200]. The fruit is a good wildlife food source, especially for birds[200]. Plants in this genus are notably susceptible to honey fungus[200].

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Propagation

Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in the autumn in a cold frame. It usually germinates in late winter. Stored seed requires stratification for 3 months at 1°c and should be sown in a cold frame as soon as it is received[200]. It might not germinate for 12 months or more. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots as soon as they are large enough to handle. If given a rich compost they usually grow away quickly and can be large enough to plant out in late summer, though consider giving them some protection from the cold in their first winter. Otherwise, keep them in pots in a cold frame and plant them out in late spring of the following year. Cuttings of mature wood, November in a frame[11].

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
Latin NameCommon NameEdibility RatingMedicinal Rating
Malus fuscaOregon Crab, Oregon crab apple32

 

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Expert comment

Author

(Raf.)Schneid.

Botanical References

60200

Links / References

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

Readers comment

jo   Sun Aug 27 2006

where can i get some

N.A.   Sun Oct 12 2008

Seems to grow well in our yard in the SF Bay Area. We got ours online from Forest Farm nursery.

Forest Farm Nursery

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