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Withania somnifera/ ashwagandha

Withania somnifera, known commonly as ashwagandha or winter cherry, is an annual evergreen shrub. An interesting flowering plant where most of its components can be consumed. Also called “Indian ginseng,” it's been used in traditional Indian Ayurvedic medicine for thousands of years to ease pain and inflammation, treat insomnia, and boost nutrition, along with other conditions. The roots are the most valued feature in Ayurvedic medicine, but the fruits are also widely used. Classified as an adaptogen, it's believed to help your body manage stress better. A really great plant for a low needs full sun garden as they prefer the soil dry and are extremely drought tolerant.

  • Germination Plant seeds 2 cm deep and 10 cm apart when the temperature is around (20 C). Seeds will germinate in two weeks. Water the seedlings well while they are establishing. Thin out the weak plants after a month of growing, leaving the space of around 50 – 60 cm between plants. Extremely drought tolerant, so reduce watering once planted. Autumn/winter flowering.

  • Usage How do you use fresh ashwagandha? The root and berry of the ashwagandha plant are a traditional Ayurvedic medicine in India. Ashwagandha is used as a tonic (it is sometimes referred to as the “Indian ginseng”) to improve physical and mental health and to treat a number of specific conditions. Boil one teaspoon of dried root in 1 cup of water, then bring to a simmer for 20 to 45 minutes. Drink two to three cups a day. Risks. ​​​​​​​Talk to a doctor before using ashwagandha if you have any health conditions, including cancer, diabetes, thyroid problems, bleeding disorders, ulcers, lupus, multiple sclerosis, or rheumatoid arthritis. Ashwagandha might interfere with thyroid tests. Stop taking ashwagandha two weeks before surgery.

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