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Methods of preparation preparation and use of medicinal plants.

At independent collection of medicinal plants must adhere to certain terms and rules of collection, as only at certain times of the plant has all necessary for treating properties and save them is possible only with proper collection and storage.

When collecting plants you need to know:

what parts of a species medicinal plants are used in folk medicine;

what time should be collected and how it is done technically;

as should be drying plants;

what measures should be taken to best preserve the harvested material.

The number of ingredients contained in medicinal plants in different stages of growth and development last happens unequally and fluctuates; therefore the time of collection of medicinal plants during the moment of maximum content of ingredients. So, if the case goes all the plant, it is harvested at the beginning of flowering; in the same time collected and the plant that is used all aerial parts – grass. The collection of leaves is usually before flowering, except “mother and stepmother” which zagotovschiki flowering. Roots, rhizomes and tubers harvested in the autumn, after the cessation of the plant SAP flow, or early spring prior to it. Seeds and fruits – in the period of their full maturity, with some exceptions. Collecting aerial parts of plants, especially flowers, should be made in dry weather and the gathering dew, as only under this condition possible when drying to keep the plants their natural color and protect against self-heating (processes of bacterial and fungal decomposition), the result is often the loss of the existing plant started. Now we list the rules for collection of individual parts of plants:

Kidneys harvested in early spring, during swelling, to their blooming. Pine buds are cut from the branches with a knife, small (e.g., birch) cut with branches. Dried, spreading a thin layer, in well ventilated areas. Dry threshed branches or buds break off hands.

The bark is harvested in the period of intensive spring SAP flow, before leafing. Make two semi-annular cut with a knife at a distance of 20-30 cm, connects the two longitudinal cuts and stripped the bark in the form of grooves. The bark removed from the trunks and branches (buckthorn), and oak – only with branches. The bark is dried in the sun, under sheds or in enclosed ventilated areas.

The leaves are harvested during budding, flowering plants, sometimes in the phase of fruiting. Thick juicy stalks, containing no nutrients (mother and stepmother) are removed because they impede drying. Small leathery leaves (lingonberries) cut with branches, and then separate the leaves. Dried in the shade under the eaves, in enclosed spaces, in attics, laying a thin layer.

The flowers are harvested in the period of full blooming, sometimes in the stage of budding. Dried in the shade, sometimes in a darkened room (cornflowers).

Herbs harvested in full flowering or budding, cutting off the entire aboveground part at the level of lower leaves, plants with hard stems (Artemisia, a series) are collected separately leaves and flowering tops. Dried in thin beams, suspended in the draft, or spread out in a thin layer in the shade at a well ventilated place, such as in the attic.

Fruits and seeds collected in the period of full maturity, and sometimes a bit immature (rose) in case when fully ripe fruit crumble, or become soft, crease-resistant when assembled. Juicy fruits sobiratelyam or evening, because at day camp in selenourea they quickly deteriorate. Before drying them zavaliat onsun within 1-2 days, and then dried at a temperature of 70-90° in furnaces. Wash the fruits before drying is impossible.

Before drying raw materials are sorted, removing accidentally caught part of the same or other plants. Put the plants in a thin layer, stirred 3-4 times a day (except for flowers). Raw material should maintain green color, not dry. Drying is done when the leaves and flowers easily pounded into powder, stems break with a distinctive crack, the roots are broken, but not bent, berries when clenching in his hand scattered, preventing agglomerated lumps.

The dry raw material is stored in a bag made of fabric, paper bags, boxes, banks. Fragrant herbs must be stored separately from odorless. Dried berries can be hygroscopic, so it is better to keep in a dry place in a draught in paper bags. Raw materials must be segregated from substances with specific odors of kerosene, naphthalene, etc. Usually the shelf life of flowers, grass and leaves do not exceed 1-2 years, roots, rhizomes, bark — 2-3 years.

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