The plant lofant is unique in its healing properties and chemical composition, no wonder it is called the northern ginseng. Tibetan monks from ancient times used it in their recipes for the treatment of a wide range of diseases. Today, lofant is also grown for ornamental purposes and as a honey plant. The popularity of this culture among gardeners is growing from year to year.
Characteristics of the plant lofant
Lofant (multicolar) is a grassy perennial of the family Lamiaceae (Lamiaceae). The genus unites 22 species with similar morphological characteristics. In different regions, the plant is known by the following names:
- licorice mint;
- big blue hyssop;
- multi-grate fennel (fennel);
- comb flower aniseed;
- hyssop gigantic;
- hyssop anise;
- agastahe (agastahis).
The Latin name for this genus of herbs is Agastache, consisting of 2 words of Greek origin: agan - “many, many,” and stachys - “ear”. Many English-speaking sources call polygrim simply mint due to the characteristic spicy aroma and similarity of flowers and leaves.
The natural habitat of this medicinal plant is the Northern states of the USA, the southern regions of Canada, Asia. Nowadays, in the wild, none of the types of lofant practically does not occur. The first description of the agastakhis belongs to the botanist from Holland - Jan Gronovius. In 1762, only a few copies and notes of the English collector of the flora of the state of Virginia, John Clayton, he was able to give a detailed description of the genus of multicolon he studied.
The lofant plant is a shrub with several straight tetrahedral stems, on which opposite toothed, simple leaves are located. The height of the multicolar, depending on the variety, ranges from 45-150 cm, the diameter of an adult plant is up to 90 cm.
The top of each shoot is crowned with a complex vertical candle-shaped inflorescence. The calyx of the flower has a tubular back conical shape, the rim is also tubular, gradually expanding. The flower has 4 stamens, 2 of which are longer, the pistil has 2 stigmas. The color of the petals can vary from pink and lilac to deep purple. Ripe fruit is divided into 4 smooth nuts with villi in the upper part.
Like many other plants of the family, the lofant has a pleasant aroma. In the midst of flowering with no wind, gentle notes of a lofant fill the entire garden with fragrance. Essential oils are abundantly contained not only in the flowers, but also in the leaves of the plant, with a slight rubbing, they also emit a subtle aniseed aroma.
Lofant is a valuable honey plant. Along with the sweet clover, this plant is specially sown in order to collect honey, which has an interesting anise flavor. Beekeepers love multi-grates for unpretentiousness and a long flowering period. Lofant can be grown in one place for up to 10 years, provided that the climate is not particularly frosty.
The beneficial properties of the herb lofant
Lofant is a medicinal plant that many rightly consider to be one of the best natural biostimulants. In folk medicine, multicolon is used for:
- acute respiratory diseases;
- diseases of the gastrointestinal tract;
- urogenital diseases.
Scientifically proven powerful medicinal properties of herbs lofant. The tool is used as:
Description of varieties and types of lofant
Many species and bred varieties lofanta successfully grown in home gardens both in our country and abroad. Plants differ in the size of the shrub, decoration and in the degree of honey-bearing, however, all multi-grates have powerful medicinal properties.
This type of multicolon is loved by many flower growers because of the compact size of the bush and large bright inflorescences. The plant in the adult form does not exceed 80 cm in height, with an ear that reaches half the total length of the stem. Blooms rich red or pale pink flowers, exuding a delicate fragrance.
Mexican lofant - a plant with good resistance to drought, grows well even on depleted soils. This species of multicolon is not grown as a honey plant, because it is not attractive for bees. The plant is often used in landscape design for landscaping local area, it is well formed by regular nipping.
The most popular variety of Mexican mint (lofant) is Amethyst. It is a fairly tall plant, the shrub reaches a height of 1.5 m. It is valued as a good honey plant, for medical purposes the Mexican multicolar is used to remove toxins, toxins and radioactive substances. It helps to normalize blood pressure, prevent vessel blockage, improve metabolism, as well as for headaches and insomnia.
Tibetan or wrinkled lofant is often called Korean mint because of its wide distribution in this country. In addition to Korea, this plant can be found in the Himalayas and Tibet, in Central and Northern Asia, in Siberia. Particularly well this species of multicolon grows on drained sandy and sandy soils.
The plant is a cross between a shrub and grass. The height of the view reaches 1 m, in diameter - up to 60 cm. The leaves look like nettles, inflorescences are dense candles with many small funnel-shaped purple-violet flowers. Korean mint has a pronounced aniseed aroma that attracts a large number of insects. From 1 hectare, planted with wrinkled loaf, for the season the beekeeper can collect up to 700 kg of delicious and healthy honey.
This type of multi-grate is characterized by good frost resistance. The rhizome of the Tibetan lofant does not freeze out at -30 ° C, the ground part can tolerate a short-term decrease in temperature to -5 ... -10 ° C.
Anis lofant Frant is a perennial plant that grows up to 110 cm in height. Multicolor flowers are painted in blue-violet range, dense spike-like inflorescences reach a length of 8-15 cm. Seeds of this species can be purchased in many hypermarkets or via the Internet. It is possible to sow both in an open ground, and on seedling.
The lofant Frant is blooming throughout the summer season, and new ones quickly bloom to replace shrunken flowers. This variety does not differ enviable decorative, but fell in love with gardeners for simplicity, valuable medicinal properties and a pleasant aroma, something reminiscent of mint and valerian.
This type of multicolar is of compact size (height not more than 60 cm) and bright orange color of flowers. Foliage has a gray-green tint. Barbera's lofant grows wild in the southeastern United States and in northern Mexico. The plant prefers sunny areas, does not tolerate frost.
This type of agastahis is characterized by compactness and increased bushiness. The mountain lofant grows on average up to 45-90 cm. The aroma of flowers is stronger than that of a wrinkled polygrid. The plant is grown mainly as an annual, but in central Russia and more southern regions with a good shelter can successfully survive the winter. Among the most popular varieties:
- Dessert Sunrise (tall bush with pink flowers);
- Sunset (lilac-orange buds, bush - about 50 cm in height);
- Blazing Sunset (with a characteristic mint flavor).
Planting and care for lofant in the open field
Lofant - unpretentious plant that can grow on any type of soil. On sour and marshy ground will not die, however, it will bloom sparsely and rarely.
On fertile nutrient soils, the lofant will quickly grow and show itself in all its glory. Systematic pruning will stimulate the development of new shoots and provide a long flowering period of several months.
In the dry season, the plant needs regular watering. For abundant flowering polygrate should be regularly fertilized. To increase the decorativeness, complex mineral fertilizers are used, which are applied 3 times a season, and fed with organic matter (compost or humus) in the fall.
As the weeds grow, lofant thickets need to weed, because the plant is not able to displace more aggressive species. In the fall, many gardeners cut the ground part of the plant, leaving half of the total height of the bush.
Lofant can be propagated both vegetatively and generatively. The most common breeding methods are:
- The division of the bush. In the beginning of autumn or in early spring, before the emergence of new shoots, the adult bush of multi-grid is divided into 3-5 parts so that each has a well-developed root system. Delenki immediately determined to a new place, after putting in the hole drainage, and plentifully watered after planting.
- Cuttings. Shoots root like any garden shrubs in the nutrient substrate, providing high humidity, that is, placing in a greenhouse or greenhouse.
- Seed method. Growing lofanta from seeds is one of the popular breeding methods. Seeds are sown directly in the soil in early May, after the last frost. To do this, make grooves about 2 cm deep, where the prepared planting material is placed. For better germination, seeds can be soaked in a growth stimulant solution. As the young plants germinate, the plantings thin out, leaving them stronger and more viable.
- Seedling method. Seeds of lofant are sown in large containers in early April. After the appearance of 2 pairs of true leaves of the plant, dive into separate pots. In the spring after the last frost, seedlings are determined to a permanent place. With this method of breeding flowering multicolon occurs in the first season.
Diseases and pests
Any type of lofant is resistant to most diseases and is practically not affected by pests. In the case of prolonged wet and cool weather, as well as with heavy thickening of plantings, the plant can suffer from powdery mildew, fusarium and spotting. These diseases are of fungal origin and are eliminated through the use of fungicides. The plant is sprayed diluted according to the instructions of the drug in 2 stages with an interval of a week.
When collected lofant
Procurement of raw materials produced from the last days of June and until August. For the season from 1 plant can be removed 2 crops. Harvesting is best done in a hot time, since it is in such conditions that the concentration of beneficial substances in the surface part is maximal. Shoots are cut from the bush with a sharp blade at a height of 10-12 cm, the foliage can be torn off with your hands.
How to dry lofant
They dry the multicolar in a dark, well-ventilated room, tied up in small brooms and hung on a rope or wire.
The dried lofant is crushed and stored in a tightly closed glass container. Shelf life - up to 2 years.
Ways to use lofanta
Lofant plant is widely used in medicine. Agastahis is a part of many drugs produced on an industrial scale. In folk recipes, anise multiflame is more common. The most popular ways to use lofanta:
- For minor skin lesions and fungal diseases, trays of decoction of lofant herb help well.
- In the form of compresses, lotions, tinctures of the multicolar, they are used for vascular diseases of the legs. Means well removes puffiness.
- For heart diseases, the use of lofant can reduce the risk of stroke, stabilize blood pressure, strengthen the walls of blood vessels. In order to prevent drugs based on it is prescribed for ischemia.
- Due to the powerful sedative effect, the multi-grate has a beneficial effect on the brain, especially in case of senile sclerosis.
- In parkinsonism, a lofant is also used as often as the root of a dog rose, dagil or sage. Tincture of crushed leaves, stems and inflorescences on alcohol allows you to get rid of the disease in the shortest possible time.
- Plant lofant - strong antioxidant. It is used to remove toxins and wastes from the body, as well as in severe poisoning.
- Reception of broth from a multicolar normalizes a metabolism.
- As a reducing agent, a lofant is used after suffering lung diseases, including pneumonia and bronchitis.
Despite proven medicinal properties, the lofant has contraindications. In addition to individual intolerance to substances included in the chemical composition of the plant, it is not recommended to take it in the following cases:
- with low blood pressure;
- during pregnancy and lactation;
- in the postoperative period;
- in the presence of oncology;
- with thrombophlebitis;
- with epilepsy.
The consequences of an overdose with anise lofant can also be dire. Despite the seeming harmlessness of drugs on the basis of a lofant, it is better to consult with a doctor before use, since only a specialist is able to calculate the correct course of treatment based on the individual characteristics and patient's dispositions.
The plant lofant will become not only a decoration of any garden, but also a green doctor that helps with many diseases. Even an inexperienced florist can grow a lofant due to the unpretentiousness and vitality of the plant.