Know about Hellebore foul

About Hellebore foul

Hellebore foul, Fetid hellebore belongs to the botanical family Ranunculaceae. It is a toxic perennial plant and have the scientific name as Helleborus foetidus. It is widespread in much of sub-Mediterranean and sub-Atlantic  Europe. The foul hellebore is a plant regularly present in thermophilic oaks and rocky places. The species is particularly fond of dry, calcareous or neutral soils. It is common throughout France, except Brittany and the north.


Characteristic of Hellebore foul

It is a hairless plant whose herbaceous stem is quite robust. This can reach 1 m during flowering. The foliage of the fetid hellebore is persistent and reveals a more or less dark green. Leaves give off a bad smell when crumpled. They are all cauline and are placed horizontally around the stem. The flowers of the plant are small and are green in color. They are symmetrical and arranged in inclined bells. There is a red mark on their board.


The flower of Hellebore foul

The flowers of the foul hellebore are composed of 5 petaloid sepals and 5 petals that secrete a nectar. They usually appear from January to April and produce pollen in large quantities. They are visited regularly by dipteran insects and also by bees and drones. The fruit of the fetid hellebore is composed of 1 to 5 leathery follicles that are wrinkled transversely, bulging at maturity and surmounted by a beak. The seeds are sown by the ants, so the offspring can be seen several meters from the mother plants.

Toxicity of Hellebore foul

The plant has an irritating local action very dangerous. It is able to slow down the movements of the heart and is able to increase blood pressure. Ingestion of the plant may also cause visceral congestion of the kidneys, lungs and uterus. At a toxic dose, the foul hellebore can cause paresis, tremors and convulsions.


Use of Hellebore foul

Fetid hellebore have a cardiotonic and narcotic properties. In the past, to relieve patients with brain disorders can use this plant. For a vermifuge especially in veterinary medicine can use  Its root particularly. However, the use of the plant for therapeutic purposes is no longer relevant because its toxicity has led to the abandon.


Hellebore foul

Hellebore foul


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