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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    (0 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (3 of 5)
Care
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: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers moist soil.

Synonyms

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].

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;  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.

Other Uses

Incense.

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

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.

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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

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
Centranthus macrosiphon 20
Centranthus ruberRed Valerian, Fox's Brush, Jupiter's Beard21
Fedia cornucopiae 20
Nardostachys grandifloraSpikenard13
Patrinia scabiosifoliaEastern Valerian, Scabious Patrinia13
Patrinia triloba 10
Patrinia villosa 11
Valeriana amurensis 10
Valeriana capitataValerian, Captiate valerian11
Valeriana celtica 11
Valeriana ciliataTobacco Root10
Valeriana dioicaMarsh Valerian, Woods valerian11
Valeriana fauriei 01
Valeriana hardwickii 03
Valeriana jatamansiIndian Valerian03
Valeriana obovataTobacco Root21
Valeriana occidentaliswestern valerian11
Valeriana officinalisValerian, Garden valerian23
Valeriana phu 21
Valeriana sambucifolia 23
Valeriana toluccana 22
Valeriana uliginosaMountain Valerian02
Valerianella carinataKeeled-Fruited Cornsalad, European cornsalad20
Valerianella chenopodifolia 20
Valerianella eriocarpaItalian Corn Salad30
Valerianella locustaCorn Salad, Lewiston cornsalad40
Valerianella radiataBeaked Cornsalad20

 

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Expert comment

Author

Bong.

Botanical References

60

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