Neha Patil (Editor)

Althaea (plant)

Updated on
Share on FacebookTweet on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Reddit
Covid-19
Kingdom  Plantae
Family  Malvaceae
Tribe  Malveae
Higher classification  Mallows
Order  Malvales
Subfamily  Malvoideae
Scientific name  Althaea
Rank  Genus
Althaea (plant) Buy Marshmallow Althaea officials Seeds Plants Leaf Herbal
Lower classifications  Marsh mallow, Althaea armeniaca

Althaea plant


Althaea is a genus of 6–12 species of perennial herbs native to Europe and western Asia. It includes Althaea officinalis, also known as the marshmallow plant, whence the fluffy confection got its name. They are found on the banks of rivers and in salt marshes, preferring moist, sandy soils. The stems grow to 1–2 m tall, and flower in mid summer. The leaves are palmately lobed with 3–7 lobes. Althaea species are used as food plants by the larvae of some Lepidoptera species including Bucculatrix quadrigemina.

Contents

Althaea (plant) httpsuploadwikimediaorgwikipediacommonsthu

Species

The genus formerly included a number of additional species now treated in the genus Alcea (Hollyhocks).

Chemical constituents

The root contains starch (37%), mucilage (11%), pectin (11%), flavonoids, phenolic acids, sucrose, and asparagine.

Uses

Althaea (plant) Althaea officinalis Wikipedia

The traditional medicinal uses of the plant are reflected in the name of the genus, which comes from the Greek althainein, meaning "to heal".

Althaea (plant) Althea rosea page

The flowers and young leaves can be eaten, and are often added to salads or are boiled and fried. The roots and stem also secrete mucilage, which is used to soften the skin, and is used in cosmetic treatments.

The Roman poet Horace refers to his own diet in his Odes, which he describes as very simple: "As for me, olives, endives, and smooth mallows provide sustenance."

The root has been used since Egyptian antiquity in a honey-sweetened confection useful in the treatment of sore throat. The later French version of the recipe, called pâte de guimauve (or "guimauve" for short), included an eggwhite meringue and was often flavored with rose water. Pâte de guimauve more closely resembles contemporary commercially available marshmallows, which no longer contain any actual marshmallow.

The root's emulsifying property is used for cleaning Persian carpets in the Middle East. It is regarded as the best method to preserve the vibrancy of vegetable dyes used in coloring the carpet's wool.

References

Althaea (plant) Wikipedia


Topics
 
B
i
Link
H2
L