Polygonum


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Polygonum

 

knotweed, a genus of annual and perennial herbs, less frequently, semishrubs and shrubs, of the family Polygonaceae. Their stems are erect, prostrate, or sometimes twining. The perianth is usually a corolla of four to six small leaves: there are four to eight stamens and two to three styles. The fruit is triquetrous or lenticular, remaining more or less fully enclosed in the perianth. There are 300 species, mostly found in temperate and tropical regions. In the USSR there are more than 120 species.

From a biological point of view several species are particularly interesting. Willowgrass (Polygonum amphibium) is found in two forms, an aquatic one and one growing in moist places (one form is capable of transforming into the other); serpent grass (P. viviparum) has lower flowers that are mostly turned into bulblets and used for vegetative propagation. Many members of the genus have economic value. Bistort (P. bisunta), peachwort (P. persicaria), knotweed (P. aviculare), and several others are used in medicine. The extract or infusion of the dried terrestrial sterile and fertile stems of water pepper (P. hydropiper) is used as an an-tihemorrhagic substance, primarily in the case of uterine hemorrhages; it is also part of the composition of the antihemorrhoidal “anestezol” suppositories. Middle Asian representatives of the genus known by the name alpine knot-weed (P. alpinum, P. coriarium, and others) are used as tanning substances.

Knotweed. black bindweed (P. convolvulus), and copse knotweed (P. dumetorum), are weeds. The last two species, as well as the cultivated (as an ornamental) fleece flower (P. baldschuanicum), are often distinguished as a separate genus, Bilderdykia. Three species of Polygonum—Sakhalin knotweed. cuspidate knotweed. and Weirich knotweed, all with a large amount of greenery—are good fodder plants. Many members of the genus are good nectar plants. Some species—for example, P. tinctorium—can be used to obtain dyes.

REFERENCES

Atlas lekarstvennykh rastenii SSSR. Moscow, 1962.
Webb, D. A., and A. O. Chater. “Polygonum L.” In Flora Eu-ropaea, vol. 1. Cambridge, 1964.

M. E. KIRPICHNIKOV

References in periodicals archive ?
The genus Polygonum (Polygonaceae): An ethnopharmacological and phytochemical perspectives -review.
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Polygonum densiflorum: sub-representado en Musanda en las muestras SS2 y SS3 (T:2 y 6 y R: 0.
The genus Polygonum comprises of weedy species found in temperate region of the world [1].
Polygonum hiekmanii (Polygonaceae), a new species from California.
In-vitro antioxidant activities, anti-nociceptive and neuropharmacological activities of Polygonum hydropiper.
Inhibition of mast cell-dependent anaphylactic reactions by the pigment of Polygonum tinctorium (Chung-Dae) in rats.
3 7 38# 21 12 0 auerswaldii Cluster 4 Sesleria caerulea 3 0 4 41# 0 10 Luzula pediformis 12 0 29 64# 18 19 Polygonum viviparum 0 5 0 41# 16 10 Festuca rubra s.
Re-development of Polygonum bistorta-meadows and abandoned Filipendula ulmaria meadows (10 ha);
Washington, Feb 16 ( ANI ): Administration of the active compound tetrahydroxystilbene glucoside (TSG) derived from the Chinese herbal medicine Polygonum multiflorum Thunb, reversed both overexpression of a-synuclein, a small protein found in the brain, and its accumulation using a mouse model of Alzheimer's disease.