The albarrazado is an annual plant, steep and rugged, often reaching one meter in height. Its stem is always right, its leaves, of considerable size, resembling an open hand and are divided into segments, although these are not equal in all of them: in the upper leaves are whole, while in the lower lobes are. The number of segments varies from five to nine.
This plant grows in cool, preferably dark. Can be found in various parts of Spain, for example, the Balearic Islands, Murcia and in parts of Andalusia.
The albarrazado flowering occurs in summer. Its flowers, of considerable size, are blue and are grouped in clusters rather long, the calyx has four petals, two lower oval and the top two facilformes. The sepals, which are five, are greater than the petals, the four of the bottom are the same, while the upper has a pouch at the base shorter than the sepal. The fruit is covered three skins quite large and contains several black-colored seeds inside.
The seeds are collected during the fall and then stored in dark place for them to dry.
The seeds of this plant contain more than one third of oil. The composition also include alkaloids, most notably the delfinina, which crystallizes easily and is characterized by its distinctive bitter taste. This alkaloid causes death by suffocation, acting on the nervous system. Thus, it is convenient to use this plant without a prescription.
Its seeds not be used for internally. It was once very commonly used to fight head lice, by reducing the seeds to a powder. Also this powder mixed with oil and scatter through the nesting place lice.
Historically have been ascribed other virtues, such as tooth pain relief if boiled with vinegar or heal wounds when mixed with honey.
In medicine is used the main alkaloid of this plant in very small doses as antineuralgic, mainly in facial neuralgia.
This plant is poisonous. Interest for external use only.
Powder. It reduces plant seeds into powder and sprinkled around the area where there are insects. It can be mixed with talcum powder to reduce dust caustic action of the seeds.
Cook. They lie in a quart of boiling water 20 gr. Of seeds and is spread over the place in which there insects.
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