What is Bearded Iris?

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Bearded Iris Quick Facts
Name: Bearded Iris
Scientific Name: Iris germanica
Origin Probably, Iris germanica is originated in Central southern Europe and the Balkan Peninsula.
Shapes Bluntly angled
Health benefits Treatment for Alzheimer's disease
With the scientific name Iris x germanica, Bearded Iris is a rhizomatous and perennial herb which grows upto 120 cm high by forming a large clump of 30 cm wide. The homogenous rhizomes are creeping on soil surface and are usually light brown, many branched, smooth measuring 1.2 to 2 cm in diameter having nodal rings. Stems are 2-3 branched, green, glaucous measuring 60-120 cm × 1-1.5 cm. The leaves have purplish base and folded midrib to base, ensiform, glaucous about 45 cm long and 3.5 cm wide. An inflorescence having terminal unit are 2 to 3 flowered and with branch units are 1 to 2 flowered. Spathes are green having purple base, narrow and scarious margins and tip measuring 2 to 5 cm. The flowers have the shades of yellow, white, and brown, blue to violet having various patterns of distribution of pigment. Floral tubes are 1 to 2.5 cm. Sepals are blue-violet, reflexed or drooping and spreading. Limbs are obovate and taper gradually to claw and are about 6 to 7.5 by 4 to 5.5 cm. An ovary measures 1.5 to 2.5 cm, bluntly trigonal and is slightly wider than floral tube. Flowers are then replaced by capsules of 3 to 5 × 2.5 cm. Capsules are bluntly angled and 3-lobed which forms on ends of stems and branches. Each capsule enclose an oval, wrinkled and reddish to brown seeds of 3 to 4 mm.

Health Benefits of Bearded Iris

The health benefits provided by Bearded Iris is discussed below:

  1. Treatment for Alzheimer’s disease

An extract of Iris germanica was used for experimenting Alzheimer’s disease. Results showed that it promoted congnitive function of AD rat induced Aβ in the behavioral test. Other studies related to neuropsycopharmacological are essential to figure out the perfect mechanism of action of Bearded Iris as a cure for managing symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. Moreover, further investigation is still required to identify the main active constituents of Iris germanica that have therapeutic effect on symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. (1)

Traditional uses

  • Juice extracted from juice is used for treating dropsy.
  • It is used for treating problems related to lungs, hoarseness, coughs, bronchitis and also chronic diarrhea.
  • Chew the pieces of dried root to overcome unpleasant breath.

Precautions                                                                                                 

  • Leaves and rhizomes contain irisin which is an irritating resinous substance. It could cause severe gastric problems if ingested.
  • Some people might get allergies and skin irritations.
  • Its excessive use causes vomiting, nausea, colic and purging.

How to Eat         

  • Peeled rhizomes are used to flavor confectionery, ice cream and baked goods.
  • In France, the root starch is regarded as a famine food to extend bread flour after eliminating bitter element.

References:

https://www.itis.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=43207#null

https://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/go/189284/

https://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/i/irises08.html        

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