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periwinkle

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periwinkle

Postby skinem » Wed Aug 16, 2006 3:38 pm

As a gardner, this interested me...I may be the only one!

per·i·win·kle
Pronunciation: 'per-i-"wi[ng]-k&l
Function: noun
Etymology: Middle English perwinke, from Old English perwince, from Vulgar Latin pervinca, short for Latin vincapervinca
1 : any of several trailing or woody evergreen herbs of the dogbane family: as a (1) : a European creeper (Vinca minor) widely cultivated as a ground cover and for its blue or white flowers -- called also myrtle (2) : a trailing plant (Vinca major) with large blue flowers that is used as a ground cover and in window boxes b : ROSY PERIWINKLE
2 : a light purplish blue -- called also periwinkle blue

An herbal remedy with a rich history in folk medicine, periwinkle is the common name for a pair of perennial flowering shrubs belonging to the dogbane (Apocynaceae) family. The herb has been used for centuries to treat a variety of ailments and was a favorite ingredient of magical charms in the Middle Ages. The purple-flowered plant was called sorcerer's violet by superstitious Europeans and was renowned for its power to dispel evil spirits. There are two main varieties: lesser periwinkle (Vinca minor), which is also called common periwinkle, and greater periwinkle (Vinca major). Lesser periwinkle originated in Spain, France, and other areas of Europe but can now be found growing in many parts of the world, while greater periwinkle is native to southern Europe. While not widely recommended for medicinal purposes today, periwinkle is sometimes used to improve brain circulation and alleviate heavy menstrual periods. Only the aboveground parts of the plant are used as a drug.

It is important to distinguish lesser and greater periwinkle from a close relative called Madagascar periwinkle. The Latin name for this herb is Catharanthus roseus, but it was formerly classified as Vinca rosea, and is still called by that name in some of the herbal literature. Another member of the dogbane family, this plant originated on the island of Madagascar but now grows in the southern United States and many other temperate regions of the world. Madagascar periwinkle has been used for centuries to treat a variety of medical problems, from diabetes and eye infections to sore throats and tumors. Modern research has indicated that Madagascar periwinkle contains dozens of alkaloids, some of which may have the ability to lower blood sugar levels and stop bleeding. Two of these alkaloids, vincristine and vinblastine, are recognized by Western medicine as potent anticancer agents. (A shaman in Madagascar who used the plants to treat tumors and cancer gave Western scientists the lead.) They are used to make important prescription drugs. Madagascar periwinkle is not widely recommended as a dietary supplement because some of the alkaloids in the plant can cause serious and potentially dangerous side effects.
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skinem
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Postby Bailey » Wed Aug 16, 2006 3:43 pm

periwinkle was always the shortest crayon in my collection, I like the flowers too.
Image Look in your seed catalogues for vincas


mark has-a-large-perennial-garden- and-plans-to-get-some-myrtles Bailey

Today is the first day of the rest of your life, Make the most of it...
kb








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Postby Palewriter » Wed Aug 16, 2006 4:43 pm

Bailey wrote:mark has-a-large-perennial-garden- and-plans-to-get-some-myrtles Bailey



I still miss my periwinkle-blue Ford F150 pickup truck.

-- PW
"Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention to arrive safely in a pretty and well-preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming: Wow!!! What a ride!"
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Postby Bailey » Wed Aug 16, 2006 5:42 pm

me too, PW,only mine was a 1948 and the original owner even painted the wheel-wells.

mark sold-it-in-1984-for-$900.00-and-it-was-wrecked Bailey

Today is the first day of the rest of your life, Make the most of it...
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Postby gailr » Wed Aug 16, 2006 5:46 pm

A friend interested in holistic treatments swears by the Bach Flower Remedies: periwinkle is recommended for "improving brain blood supply, increasing oxygen and glucose for brain use, and raising brain levels of the neurotransmitter serotonin."

So skinem, keep growing those periwinkles to encourage witty posts for a long time to come. (As long as no snakes jump out and scare you speechless.) :D

-gailr
who prefers Ginkgo Biloba...when she remembers to take it...
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