balsam

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balsam

(bôl`səm), fragrant resinresin,
any of a class of amorphous solids or semisolids. Resins are found in nature and are chiefly of vegetable origin. They are typically light yellow to dark brown in color; tasteless; odorless or faintly aromatic; translucent or transparent; brittle, fracturing like glass;
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 obtained from various trees. The true balsams are semisolid and insoluble in water, but they are soluble in alcohol and partly so in hydrocarbons. They contain benzoic or cinnamic acid; these include Peru balsam and tolu balsam (both obtained from varieties of the South American tree Myroxylon balsamum of the pulsepulse,
in botany, common name for members of the Fabaceae (Leguminosae), a large plant family, called also the pea, or legume, family. Numbering about 650 genera and 17,000 species, the family is third largest, after the asters and the orchids.
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 family), benzoinbenzoin
or benzoinum
, balsamic resin, the dried exudation from the pierced bark of various species of the benzoin tree (Styrax) native to Sumatra, Java, and Thailand; appearing as red-brown to yellow-brown tears.
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, and storax. Other resins called balsams include Mecca balsam (balm of Gileadbalm of Gilead
, name for several plants belonging to different taxonomic families. The historic Old World balm of Gilead, or Mecca balsam, is a small evergreen tree (Commiphora gileadensis, also once called C.
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), Canada balsamCanada balsam,
yellow, oily, resinous exudation obtained from the balsam fir. It is an oleoresin (see resin) with a pleasant odor but a biting taste. It is a turpentine rather than a true balsam.
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, and copaibacopaiba
, oleoresin (see resin) obtained from several species of tropical South American trees of the genus Copaifera. The thick, transparent exudate varies in color from light gold to dark brown, depending on the ratio of resin to essential oil.
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. Balsams are often used in medical preparations and perfumes.

balsam

[′bȯl·səm]
(materials)
An exudate of the balsam tree; a mixture of resins, essential oils, cinnamic acid, and benzoic acid.

balsam

1. any of various fragrant oleoresins, such as balm or tolu, obtained from any of several trees and shrubs and used as a base for medicines and perfumes
2. any of various similar substances used as medicinal or ceremonial ointments
3. any of certain aromatic resinous turpentines
4. any plant yielding balsam
5. any of several balsaminaceous plants of the genus Impatiens, esp I. balsamina, cultivated for its brightly coloured flowers
References in periodicals archive ?
The 17th Linthwaite Cubs helped to clear Himalayan balsam from the village's Spa Fields.
Despite being introduced to the UK as a decorative, quickgrowing garden plant in 1859, (it closely resembles the Busy Lizzie but reaches heights in excess of 10ft) it is now illegal to plant it or even to allow Himalayan balsam to grow in the wild.
I loved seeing the British wildflowers and blackberries, but you don't see them anymore because the whole riverbank has been taken over by Himalayan Balsam.
We find yarrow (a good substitute for lavendar or rosemary), dead nettles (no sting and you can suck the nectar out of the flowers), Himalayan balsam (a non-native invasive plant with tasty pink flowers), rowan (which makes a good jelly mixed with apples), wood avons (which can make dandelion and burdock if you infuse the root), rosehips (which make good syrup), as well as mint, sloes, elderberries and hazelnuts.
Biodiversity officers from Flintshire and Denbighshire Council have spent four years trying to control unwanted Himalayan balsam in the River Alyn, between Llandegla and Mold.
At the Idle Valley Nature Reserve, near Retford, help is needed to halt the invasive Himalayan balsam, which has smothered more native plants.
A WatersideCare group has been set up at Witton Lakes and will see an 18-strong group carry out regular clean ups of the brook and lake as well as remove stands of invasive Himalayan Balsam, carry out regular stream invertebrate samples and campaign on water quality issues.
HIMALAYAN BALSAM (Impatiens glandulifera) Grows in dense strands that suppress native grasses and flora.
Worst offenders include Japanese knotweed, Australian swamp stonecrop and Himalayan balsam - a tall weed found in riverbanks which suffocates all other plants.
A Himalayan balsam control campaign was put in place on the Flintshire river after the success of a seven-year sister project on the River Alun, which is now nearly clear of the non-native weed.
Be More Outdoors hold working party to build pathways, dig channels and bash Himalayan Balsam for a new chil-|dren's playing field
It's the pollen of Himalayan balsam which sticks to their backs as they collect the nectar; it makes them look as though they have been dusted with flour.