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Ruta graveolens (LINN.)
rhyestai (greek) - to hinder, to save or help
or reuo (greek) - to set free [because this herb is so efficacious in various diseases]
graveolens (latin) - heavy smelling
The English name rue is derived from its earlier English name, ruth, which meant incant, sorrow, and repentance.
Herb-of-Grace. Herbygrass. Garden Rue. Bitterwort Garden Rue
German: Kreuzraute, Weinraute
The whole herb is used, the drug consisting of both the
fresh and the dried herb. The tops of the young shoots contain the greatest virtues of any part of the plant. The shoots are gathered before the plant flowers.
The volatile oil is contained in glands distributed over the whole plant and contains caprinic,
plagonic, caprylic and oenanthylic acids - also a yellow crystalline body, called rutin. Oil of Rue is distilled from the fresh herb. Water serves to extract the virtues of the plant better than spirits of wine. Decoctions and infusions are usually made from the fresh plant, or the oil may be given in a dose of from 1 to 5 drops. The dried herb - which is a greyish green - has similar taste and odour, but is less powerful. It is used, powdered, for making tea.
Family: N.O. Rutaceae [Rue family or citrus family]
Wichman [Reference Works]:
Plantae; Spermatophyta, Angiospermae - Flowering Plants; Dicotyledonae; Rosiflorae / Rosidae; Rutales; Rutaceae - Citrus Family
Hughes MM (Reference Works):
HAHNEMANN, Mat. Med. Pura, vol. iv of original, vol. ii of translation. Contains 26 symptoms from self, 259 from 8 associates, and 3 from authors.
Description of the substance
Rue, a hardy, evergreen, somewhat shrubby plant, is a native of Southern Europe. The stem is woody in the lower part, the leaves are alternate, bluish-green, bi- or tripinnate, emit a powerful, disagreeable odour and have an exceedingly bitter, acrid and nauseous taste. The greenish-yellow flowers are in terminal panicles, blossoming from June to September. In England Rue is one of our oldest garden plants, cultivated for its use medicinally, having, together with other herbs, been introduced by the Romans, but it is not found in a wild state except rarely on the hills of Lancashire and Yorkshire. This wild form is even more vehement in smell than the garden Rue. The whole plant has a disagreeable and powerful odour. The first flower that opens has usually ten stamens, the others eight only.
The plant grows almost anywhere, but thrives best in a partially sheltered and dry situation. Propagation may be effected: (1) by seeds, sown outside, broadcast, in spring, raked in and the beds kept free from weeds, the seedlings, when about 2 inches high, being transplanted into fresh beds, allowing about 18 inches each way, as the plants become busy; (2) by cuttings, taken in spring and inserted for a time, until well rooted, in a shady border; (3) by rooted slips, also taken in spring. Every slip or cutting of the young wood will readily grow, and this is the most expeditious way of raising a stock.
The plant grows almost anywhere, but thrives best in a partially sheltered and dry situation. Propagation may be effected: (1) by seeds, sown outside, broadcast, in spring, raked in and the beds kept free from weeds, the seedlings, when about 2 inches high, being transplanted into fresh beds, allowing about 18 inches each way, as the plants become busy; (2) by cuttings, taken in spring and inserted for a time, until well rooted, in a shady border; (3) by rooted slips, also taken in spring. Every slip or cutting of the young wood will readily grow, and this is the most expeditious way of raising a stock
Frans Vermeulen, Prisma, Ruta pp 1149 - 1156:
Ruta graveolens is a subshrub of 60 - 90 cm high. The lower part of the stem is woody. It has green or blue-green, compundly-pinnate leaves and greenish-yello flowers. Each flower has a square of four concave yellow petals with wrinkled margins and with eight stamens. The central flower of the corymb has
five concave yellow petals [and ten stamens] and often is placed lower on the flowering stalk than the four-petaled flowers. The first flower that opens has usually five petals [ten stamens], the others four only [eight stamens]. The plant thrives in warm, well-drained soils, particularly where lime is present. The bruised leaves have an orange-like fragrance. Rue releases its scent in a remarkable way. The essential oil is contained in a cavity immediately beneath the surface of the leaf, above which is a thin layer of cells pierced by a cavity in the middle. he cells swell up and bend inwards, pressing on the essential oil beneath, which is driven to the surface of the leaf and there released. rue is a poor companion plant for many other species, growing badly with sage, cabbage and sweet basil. It is a good companion for roses and raspberries. Mrs Grieve states that this palnt is less liable to be injured by frost in winter when grown in a poor, dry, rubbishy soil than in good soil.