Ordinary barberry has been known since ancient times. First learned about its beneficial properties in Egypt. Since that time, it has been widely used in medicine and cosmetology. In addition, the shrub will become an exquisite decoration of any summer cottage. His beautiful appearance will not leave indifferent even the most sophisticated gardener. A pleasant bonus will be a crop in the form of delicious berries.
This plant belongs to the family of barberry. Its name Berberis vulgaris (Latin) comes from the Arabic word «Beri», What does translate mean «sink». It is her in shape that resemble the leaves of the shrub.
The plant grows both in the mountainous area and on the flatland. The thorny shrub is quite branched, and is characterized by a surface root system (located in the upper soil layers). It is interesting to note that the old branches have a cortex of a gray shade, and young – yellow-brown. Thorns are located on the shoots. They can be either ordinary and threepart, in the sinuses of which the kidneys are formed.
Varieties differ among themselves with the color of the leaves, the shape of the bush and its size. Ordinary barberry can be purple, yellow or red shade. Thanks to its decorative properties and prickly «protection» It is often used as a hedge, which also favorably transforms the site.
Flowering lasts 1 month. It begins in April. Berries ripen in September-October.
Barberis ordinary looks especially beautiful in the spring, summer and autumn season. In summer, it resembles a green ball, and in the spring pleases gardeners with unique flowering and delicate, slightly sweetskinned aroma.In the fall, foliage changes color from green to bright red or burgundy shade.
The height of this plant is 1.5-2.5 meters. The rhizome horizontal lignify. The main root with lateral branches departs from him. The length of the kidneys does not exceed 1 mm.
During the flowering period, the shrub is covered with yellow flowers. Their diameter is 7-9 mm. One brush contains immediately 15-24 flowers. Each of them has 6 eggshaped petals. At the base of the flower is bright orange nectarics. In addition, it has 1 pestle and 6 stamens.
After flowering, berries begin to form. They have an oblong-elliptical form. The length of the fruit reaches 12 cm. Their bright color deserves special attention. Most often they are painted in a red tint, but they can be saturatedly purple. The berries are edible and are distinguished by an original, slightly sour taste. Weight 1 of the fetus is about 4 g.
Leaves and seeds
It is interesting to note that the leaves develop on shortened shoots, and thorns up to 2 cm long are formed on the elongated instead of them. The foliage has an elliptical or ovoid shape. Its width is 2 cm., and the length can reach 4 cm. Closer to the base, the sheet begins to narrow, forming a rounded edge.
Seed length – 5 mm. They are slightly flattened and narrowed in the upper part. They are used to grow and reproduce the bush.
Where it grows
The geographical areas of ordinary barberry are in Front Asia, Transcaucasia, in many European countries, with the exception of the northern part of the mainland. A shrub is growing in Eurasia. Mainly in the foreststeppes of the North Caucasus. Under natural conditions, it can be found on the slopes of ravines, in river valleys, on rocky lands and forest edges.
Today, many gardeners grow ordinary barbaris on their site, independently creating favorable conditions for it. The plant prefers dry and bright places, while it is quite unpretentious in choosing the soil. However, for proper development, it is recommended to plant it in neutral acidity of the soil.
The chemical elements that make up the berries have a number of useful properties. The fruits have a bactericidal, soothing, antiinflammatory, general strengthening, antioxidant effect. This is due to the unique composition of barberry, which includes carotenoids, pectin substances, organic acids, vitamins of group C, E, K, Micro-Elements.
Barberry berries have a positive effect on the body:
- purify blood;
- prevent the occurrence of hepatitis;
- stop bleeding;
- relieve unpleasant sensations during menstruation;
- treat a cold;
- have a strong choleretic property;
- slows down the aging process;
- relieve inflammation;
- remove toxins;
- impede the development of malignant tumors.
In addition, the fruits of the shrub have a beneficial effect on the skin, eliminating its minor defects. Barberry hair mask helps strengthen curls and get rid of dandruff.
Ordinary barbaris, due to its healing properties, has received quite wide application. It is used:
- In pharmacology – From the berries of this plant create antiinflammatory, choleretic, diuretic, antimicrobial, and antiseptic drugs.
- In cooking – fruits have a tart-acidic taste, which gives the dishes special notes. From the berries, not only cooks compote and jam, but also prepare sauce from them for fish and meat, and also add to the first dishes.
- In folk medicine – Even in ancient Egypt, the plant was used to treat various ailments. Decoctions, teas and solutions for lotions are prepared from it.
- In cosmetology – Many wellknown manufacturers of cosmetics use the leaves and fruits of barberry for the preparation of creams, masks, shampoos, and t.D. However, cook «funds» beauty from the ingredients can be at home.
Ordinary barberry – This is not only a healthy, but also a beautiful plant. It is especially appreciated by gardeners due to its high decorative qualities. Today it is quite often used in landscape design. From berries and leaves you can prepare delicious home blanks or drugs.