Descurainia sophia is a member of the family Brassicaceae.[1] Common names include flixweed, herb-Sophia and tansy mustard.[2] It reproduces by seeds. It is a dominant weed in dark brown prairie and black prairie soils of southern Alberta.[3] Its stem is erect, branched, and 4–30 in (10–76 cm) high.[4] It was once given to patients with dysentery and called by ancient herbalists Sophia Chirurgorum, "The Wisdom of Surgeons".[5] It is the type species of the genus Descurainia (named for French botanist and herbalist François Descurain (1658–1749)) and of the rejected genus Sophia Adans.[6][7]

Descurainia sophia
Scientific classification Edit this classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Rosids
Order: Brassicales
Family: Brassicaceae
Genus: Descurainia
D. sophia
Binomial name
Descurainia sophia

Sisymbrium sophia L.

Culinary use edit

In Iran, the seeds are called khak-e shir (khakshir), and khak-e shir drinks are traditionally favored as thirst quencher during hot summer days.[8] Khakshir is also considered a medicinal substance in traditional Iranian medicine, consumed in varying combinations with other herbs and substances to gain effects ranging from antidiuretic to aphrodisiac.

China has a tradition of eating this plant, and its eating method is recorded in the Jiuhuang Bencao.

Cultural edit

In German, it is called the Sophienkraut and associated with Saint Sophia of Rome, who was invoked against late frosts.[9]

References edit

  1. ^ a b "Descurainia sophia (L.) Webb ex Prantl". World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Retrieved 12 November 2014 – via The Plant List. Note that this website has been superseded by World Flora Online
  2. ^ "Descurainia sophia". Germplasm Resources Information Network. Agricultural Research Service, United States Department of Agriculture. Retrieved 12 November 2014.
  3. ^ Wyatt, Newton, Bowser and Odynsky, 1942. Soil Survey of Blackfoot and Calgary Sheets
  4. ^ "Flixweed". Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2007-06-05.
  5. ^ - A Modern Herbal | Mustards
  6. ^ Index Nominum Genericorum
  7. ^ Tropicos
  8. ^ Amiri, Mohammad Sadegh; Joharchi, Mohammad Reza (2013). "Ethnobotanical investigation of traditional medicinal plants commercialized in the markets of Mashhad, Iran". Avicenna Journal of Phytomedicine. 3 (3): 254–271. ISSN 2228-7930. PMC 4075713. PMID 25050282.
  9. ^ Ekkart Sauser (1995). "Sophia von Rom". In Bautz, Traugott (ed.). Biographisch-Bibliographisches Kirchenlexikon (BBKL) (in German). Vol. 10. Herzberg: Bautz. cols. 807–808. ISBN 3-88309-062-X.