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wax myrtle

wax myrtle

Shrubby tree up to 30ft (10m) with waxy pointy leaves. Stays green year round. The tiny fruits are seeds with light-colored wax, often used to make candles. Ironically, the wax isn’t really edible, but the leaves, roots and bark are quite useful for gas, bowel and liver problems, ulcers, colds, illness, astringent, anti-inflammatory, diuretic, antibacterial, immune booster.
Edible Plant Guide © 2012 Markus Rothkranz
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a genus of plants of the family Myricaceae. Plants of the genus Myrica are small trees or shrubs with alternate whole leaves set with small aromatic glandules. The flowers either grow in spiky racemes or are single; they are small, usually unisexual, and without a perianth. There are 2-20 stamens and a superior gynoecium that is unilocular and made of two carpels, with one rudimentary seed. The fruits are drupaceous.

There are more than 50 species found in both hemispheres. In the USSR there are two species: bog myrtle (M. gale) grows in swamps near the Baltic coast; M. tomentosa grows in the maritime belt of the southern regions of the Far East. The American species M. pennsylvanica and M. cerifera are raised occasionally as ornamental shrubs. Some tropical species have edible fruits.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.