Thursday, February 21, 2008

Anthurium Radicans-Dressleri vs Piper betle

Worth waiting anthurium. A hybrid of creeping brazilian anthurium spesies (radicans) with anthurium dressleri produce a beautiful bullate textured leaves. It has dark green leaves and red petioles. In Indonesia, we called it anthurium 'sirih' due to its resemblance to piper betle.
The Betel (Piper betle) is a spice whose leaves have medicinal properties. The active ingredients of betel oil, which is obtained from the leaves, are primarily a class of allylbenzene compounds. Though particular emphasis has been placed on chavibetol (betel-phenol; 3-hydroxy-4-methoxyallylbenzene), it also contains chavicol (p-allyl-phenol; 4-allyl-phenol), estragole (p-allyl-anisole; 4-methoxy-allylbenzene), eugenol (allylguaiacol; 4-hydroxy-3-methoxy-allylbenzene; 2-methoxy-4-allyl-phenol), methyl eugenol (eugenol methyl ether; 3,4-dimethoxy-allylbenzene), and hydroxycatechol (2,4-dihydroxy-allylbenzene).
Several terpenes and terpenoids are present in the betel oil as well. There are two monoterpenes, p-cymene and terpinene, and two monoterpenoids, eucalyptol and carvacrol. Additionally, there are two sesquiterpenes, cadinene and caryophyllene. In India, Nepal, Sri Lanka and parts of South Asia, the leaves are chewed together with the mineral slaked lime (calcium hydroxide), Catechu, called "Kattha" in Hindi,and the areca nut which, by association, is sometimes inaccurately called the "betel nut". The lime acts to keep the active ingredient in its freebase or alkaline form, thus enabling it to enter the bloodstream via sublingual absorption. The areca nut contains the alkaloid arecoline, which promotes salivation (the saliva is stained red), and is itself a stimulant. This combination, known as a "betel quid", has been used for several thousand years. Tobacco is sometimes added.
Betel leaves are used as a stimulant, an antiseptic and a breath-freshener Paan. In Ayurvedic medicine, they are used as an aphrodisiac. In Malaysia they are used to treat headaches, arthritis and joint pain. In Thailand, Indonesia and China they are used to relieve toothache. In Indonesia they are drunk as an infusion and used as an antibiotic. They are also used in an infusion to cure indigestion, as a topical cure for constipation, as a decongestant and as an aid to lactation.
In India, betel is used to cast out (cure) worms.
In India, the betel and areca play an important role in Indian culture especially among Hindus. All the traditional ceremonies governing the lives of Hindus use betel and areca. For example to pay money to the priest, they keep money in the betel leaves and place it beside the priest.
The betel and areca also play an important role in Vietnamese culture. In Vietnamese there is a saying that "the betel begins the conversation", referring to the practice of people chewing betel in formal occasions or "to break the ice" in awkward situational conversations. The betel leaves and areca nuts are used ceremonially in traditional Vietnamese weddings. Based on a folk tale about the origins of these plants, the groom traditionally offer the bride's parents betel leaves and areca nuts (among other things) in exchange for the bride. The betel and areca are such important symbols of love and marriage such that in Vietnamese the phrase "matters of betel and areca" (chuyện trầu cau) is synonymous with marriage.
While the betel has a considering health and culture benefit for some people, my anthurium known only for its highly ornamental appearance. So, i guess it also related to mental health too, isn't it?

Anthurium atau Philo?

Dari dulu saya penasaran sebenarnya apa yang digunakan botanist untuk membedakan anthurium dari keluarga aroid lainnya semisal aglaonema, colocasia, alocasia, xanthosoma dan terutama philodendron. Beberapa spesies philodendron bagi saya sukup membingungkan apakah masuk ke dalam genus anthurium atau philodendron.
Baru2 ini saya menemukan bacaan bahwa kunci pengelompokan anthurium sebagai pembeda dari genus lainnya adalah pada benjolan yang tepat berada dibagian bawah daun dan ujung atas petiole (tangkai daun). Benjolan itu disebut geniculum. Geniculum berfungsi seperti siku pada manusia, membuat daun mampu mereposisi dirinya terhadap sumber cahaya.
Geniculum hanya ada pada Anthurium dan Spathiphyllum pada genera Aroid. Geniculum inilah yang digunakan oleh para botanist untuk menentukan spesies yang baru ditemukan tersebut tergolong anthurium atau philodendron karena ini tidak ditemukan pada philo.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Anthurium 'Kol'

This is a four leaves anthurium 'kol' seedling. The price of this kind of plants soar high in recent year in Indonesia. Whether it's rare or not, it still dubious. As a plant lover, i just hope that this seedling will grow bigger and look nice eventually. Good grow, mate!

My Black Selvet

My Anthurium 'Black Selvet' seedling. The future mysterious dark foliage anthurium. The petioles already have reddish/purplies colour.