Medicinal plants (lat. Plantae medicinalis ) are a large group of plants. organs or parts which are raw materials for tools used in medical or veterinary practice for therapeutic or prophylactic purposes.
The most widely represented medicinal plants in folk medicine .
Peoples of the ancient world was used to 21 thousand species of plants [ citation 122 days ]. Already at the earliest stages of human development the plants were not only a source of nutrition, they helped the man to get rid of diseases. The oldest of the extant medical treatises is a sign. found during excavations of the Sumerian city (III century BC). 145 lines in the Sumerian language are given the recipe 15 recipes. It shows that the doctors of ancient Sumer used mainly such plants as mustard. fir. pine. thyme. plum fruits. pears. figs. willow. etc.
The culture and knowledge of the ancient Sumerians inherited the Babylonians. used medicinally licorice root. dope. henbane. Flaxseed, etc. the Babylonians noticed that the sun light affects the healing properties of some plants, so dried them in the shade and some grass collected at night. Primenyalsya widely in China, India, Tibet. In 3216 BC, the Chinese Emperor Shennon wrote a work on medicine, “the Bang-Cao” (“Herbalist”), where most documented herbal remedies. Chinese medicine used more than 1500 plants. The most frequently used licorice, primrose. ginseng. the Chinese Magnolia vine. the skullcap. bow. garlic. asparagus. Astragalus. cinnamon. ginger. the tangerine peel. dogwood .
Ayurveda, described in the “Ayurveda” (I century BC), used about 800 plants that are used in the present time. From the III century BC in India began cultivation of medicinal plants.
Tibetan medicine is based at the Indian, and in the treatise on Tibetan medicine “chzhud Chi” has a large section devoted to the use of medicinal plants. Tibetan medicine has long been shrouded in mystery. but in 1898 the doctor Peter Badmayev translated “chzhud Shi” on Russian language, created an office of Tibetan medicine in St. Petersburg and successfully treated residents of St. Petersburg Oriental herbs, which he had brought from Mongolia. In Tibetan medicine used about 400 species of medicinal plants  .
In the book of Avicenna’s “Canon of medicine” described about 900 plants and methods of their use.
With the emergence of a special class of physicians and pharmacists knowledge on medicinal plants were formalized. Information on medicinal plants and requirements for medicinal raw materials were present in pharmacopoeias .
Currently the training program in medical and pharmaceutical institutions include the course in pharmacognosy .
In folk medicine, are used neoficialni and medicinal plants, which has no clear boundaries and criteria of relevance to drug every writer defines for himself.
Usually there are the following categories of medicinal plants:
Officinal herbs — plants, raw materials which allowed for the production of medicines in the country. These kinds of medicinal plant resources listed in the State register of medicines of the Russian Federation.
Pharmacopoeia of medicinal plants — officinal plant, quality requirements for medicinal plants which are set out in the relevant article of the State Pharmacopoeia or international Pharmacopoeia. Medicinal plants and medicinal plant raw materials is studying one of the areas of pharmaceutical science Pharmacognosy .
Medicinal plants traditional medicine is the most wide category, the majority of plants it is relatively poorly described, and information about the effectiveness of their application have not been properly check by means of modern pharmacology. However, many plants in this group are actively used in countries where medical care is unavailable or too expensive.
Medicinal herbs, contains at least one substance. with healing properties. This substance or substances is often unevenly distributed over the tissues and parts of the plant. Therefore, the collection of medicinal herbs need to know where useful items and in what period of plant development, their concentration is maximum.
Major uses of raw material of medicinal plants: production of medicines for internal and external use.
Inside used water extraction: infusion. broth. water-alcohol, oil extraction (tincture. extracts ) of medicinal vegetative raw materials or fees. From fresh juicy parts of officinal plants get the juice. Rarely finds application in medicine the powder of dried medicinal plant raw material.
From officinal plants receive different morphological groups of medicinal plants: grass, flowers, leaves, rhizomes, roots, fruits, seeds, bark, buds, etc.
The collection of wild plants