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This is a small sized tree related to the Allspice, with leaves containing and aromatic oil that somewhat resembles clove oil. This essential oil is distilled from the leaves and is used in perfumes. A type of cologne named 'Bay Rum' was historically made in the early 20th century by distilling the oil using rum and water, hence the common name of the plant. The cologne has its spicy notes from the bay and its smoky, woody tones from the rum aged in casks. The essential oil of bay rum has two distinct fractions upon distillation. The first fraction distills out quickly and is a light weight oil that floats on water. The second fraction distills more slowly and is a heavy weight oil that sinks in water. The two oils are recombined to make oleum pimentae foliorum, or 'oil of pimento leaves'.
Bay Rum inflorescence has small white flowers resembling tiny bouquets of sparkly cotton candy. They are followed by a small black ovoid fruit. The fruit is not edible, the bay rum (used for cologne) and essential oil itself are toxic and should not be ingested. However, leaves of Pimenta racemosa can be used in cooking and tea.
For generations, Bay Rum has been used in folk medicine for sore muscles, strains, and sprains. Later it was discovered that the essential oil contains a diterpene that has anti-bacterial properties.
If you are looking for a slow-growing, columnar tree with a mature height of 20 ft, the Bay Rum, a magical charmer with healing properties, is the best choice. If you rub the leaves, the fragrance will linger with you all day, the plant will never run out of fragrance.
Plant care and hardiness is similar to Allspice. Grow this tree in full sun or light shade, and provide regular watering.
Pimenta racemosa var. citrfolia "Lemon Scent" (Lemon Bay Rum Tree, Citrus Bay) is a hard-to-find variety. All plant parts have strong lemon scent, very pleasant and relaxing. This cultivar can be propagated from seeds, but only 10-20 percent of the seedlings come true to type, others come out as regular Bay Rum; cuttings are hard to root. The Citrus Bay plants seem to be much hardier than regular Bay Rum and have better resistance to leaf fungus.
Daikon (literally - big root), Raphanus sativus var. longipinnatus, also known by many other names depending on context, is a mild-flavored winter radish usually characterized by fast-growing leaves and a long, white, napiform root. Originally native to continental East Asia, daikon is harvested and consumed throughout the region, as well as in South Asia, and is now available internationally. In some locations, daikon may be planted but not harvested, for its ability to break up compacted soils and recover nutrients.
In Japan, many types of pickles are made with daikon roots, including takuan and bettarazuke. Daikon roots can be served raw, in salads, or as sashimi's tsuma which is prepared by meticulous katsura-muki. Daikon-oroshi (grated daikon) is frequently used as a garnish, often mixed into various dippings such as ponzu, a soy sauce and citrus juice condiment. The pink spicy momiji-oroshi, literally "autumn-leaf-red grated (daikon)") is daikon grated with chili pepper. Simmered dishes are also popular such as oden. Daikon that has been shredded and dried (a common method of preserving food in Japan) is called kiriboshi-daikon ("cut-dried daikon"). Daikon radish sprouts (kaiware-daikon (literally "open-clam-like daikon")) are used raw for salad or garnishing sashimi. Daikon leaves are frequently eaten as a green vegetable. They are thorny when raw, so softening methods such as pickling and stir frying are common. The daikon leaf is one of the Festival of Seven Herbs, called suzushiro.
In Chinese cuisine, turnip cake and chai tow kway are made with daikon.
It is a small evergreen bush with flat bluish-green aromatic leaves and yellow flowers that bloom in late summer. Colorful sepals are long lasting. Rue fragrance is strong, characteristically aromatic and sweet; it cannot be compared with any other spice. The taste is rather bitter, even more so when dried. Rue fruits (berries) taste similar, but stronger and somewhat hot. For use in medicine and food, its leaves and young stems are gathered before rue flowers bloom. In some parts of the world, rue is used as an insect repellent for humans and animals. Sometimes, rue plants are also used as natural pesticides, planted among other bushes such as roses or raspberry brambles to keep away insects and small animals. Ancient Egyptians and early Greeks believed that rue taken orally could improve eyesight and it was once popular among medieval artists, crafters, and writers who needed good vision to perform close work. The juice of fresh rue has been used to relieve toothaches and earaches. In Chinese medicine, rue is used to eliminate intestinal worms. Even though rue has been used historically for these and a number of other serious conditions, such as acute infections, heart conditions, and mental illnesses, no scientific studies currently support any of these uses. It is said to strengthen capillaries when taken in tea. Rue oil is approved, however, by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a flavoring agent. As a relative of the citrus fruits, rue oil has a flavor similar to the bitter oil in orange or lemon rinds. Small amounts of it may be used in cosmetics and foods. Fresh rue leaves are sometimes added to mixed salads, used in making pickles, or put into cooked dishes for a bitter taste. In Italy, rue is used to flavor grappa, a type of brandy.
Similar species - Ruta chalepensis.
Colima is a rounded shrub bearing recurved thorns and red shiny fruit that contrasts well with its bright green leaflets in mid, to late summer. An important wildlife plant, colima is a food source for white tailed deer, many birds, butterfly larvae and butterflies, who sip the nectar from its inconspicuous flowers. Its bark and bitter-tasting aromatic leaves are powdered and used as a condiment, while its wood produces a yellow dye. The flowers, leaves and fruit have an aroma of citrus.