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Useful plants of Japan, described and illustrated. online

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292. Nicotiana tabacum, L., Tobacco, Jap. Tabako ;
an annual herbaceous plant of the order Solanaceae cultivated in
fields. Several varieties are produced in different places, and the
ways of cultivation are different in every place. Generally the
seeds are sown in spring and transplanted in fields in summer, but
in warm regions they are sown in the beginning of winter and
planted in fields early in the following year. In summer the
stems are 4-5 fts. high and produce many flowers at the top.
The stems are, however, generally cut at the top before flowering,
and the leaves are taken off from time to time. The harvested
leaves are dried and preserved to make smoking tobacco by cutting
or rolling.

293. Humulus lupulus, L. , var. cordifolius, Max. , Hop,
Jap. Karahauaso ; a perennial climbing herbaceous plant of
the order Urticacea3 growing wild in mountainous districts of
northern regions. Jt is much improved by cultivation. Male and
female flowers open on separate plants. In summer the male
plant produces flowers in loose drooping panicles, while the female
plant grows scaly cones or cutkins. At the base of the scale there
are included small round seeds, which are bitter and fragrant, and
constitute what are called hops used by brewers and bakers.

Note. The processes of preparing tea, sugar, and tobacco are
impossible to be described completely in these limited lines, and
so they were briefly mentioned here. Besides those mentioned in
the foregoing numbers, roasted barley, beans, and coix, and also
cut and slightly roasted sea gardle are used in the same way as
tea, and so these may be included in this chapter. The leaves of
Sterculia platanifolia, pines, etc. are also used as a substitute of
tobacco, but they are omitted here.



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CIIAPSKK XIIJ. ECONOMIC PLANTS OF DIFFERENT USES.

This Chapter includes useful plants for the mankind with
different economic purposes, except those used as food.

294. Morns alba, L., Mulberry tree, Jap. Kuwa ; a
deciduous tree of the order Urticaceae. The male and female
flowers are produced on separate plants. It reaches to the height
20-30 fts. when growing wild, but when cultivated it is cut down
to a certain height for the purpose to gather the leaves easily. In
spring the flowers appear before the leaves. The leaves are of
many different shapes, being produced from the two typical forms
of entire and dentate edges. These leaves are necessary food for
silk- worms. In summer the purplish red fruits ripen, and they
are eatable with an agreeable subacid taste. The young leaves are
used to make a kind of tea, and the bark-fibres are used for the
preparation of paper.

295. Quercus serrata, 77*., Jap. Kumigi ; a deciduous
tree of the order Amentaceae growing wild on mountainous
regions, but much cultivated for fuel. It grows about 10 fts.
high. In early summer it produces male and female flowers
separately on the same plant, and in autumn it produces acorns
of the size of a thumb. The leaves are used to feed several
worms producing silk. Other quercus species allied to this are
used for the same purposes.

296. Equisetum hiemale, Z., Jap. Tokusa / an
evergreen herb of the order Equisetaceae, growing wild or in
gardens. The stalk is hollow and tabular with many joints,
being abour 2 fts. high. As it is hard and rough, it is used for
polishing various articles as wood and horn. The h'owers are
produced at the top of the stalk, resembling those of Equisetum
arvense, L. The quality of the stalks for polishing purpose
differs according to the place where produced. Those produced
from the village Waka-mori of the district Funai in the province
Tamba are most famous for their good quality.



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297. Aphananthe aspera, Pl, t Jap. Muku-no<-Ki : ,
yenoki ; a deciduous tree of the order Urticaceae growing wild
every where. It attains a height of 20-30 fts. In spring the
male and female flowers appear at the same time with leaves, and
in autumn purplish black berries about in the size of a pea ripen.
The berries are edible with a sweet taste. .As the leaves are hard
and rough, they are used to polish various articles as wood and
horns. The leaves are preserved for this purpose by drying
them during autumn. Those produced from the village Terakiima
of the district Fitnai in the province Tamba are best for this-
purpose.

298. Juncus communis, E. May., Jap. I, Yu-gitsa,
TosJiin-giisa ; a perennial herb of the order Juncacere. Though
it grows wild, it is much cultivated in wet places. It is about
4 fts. high, yielding flowers and seeds at the top. It grows in
groups, and in summer it is cut and dried. Its pith is used as the
wick of the Japanese lump. The stalks are also used for weaving:
mats.

299. Sorghum nigrum, Boem. et Schule., Jap. Hoki-
morokoshi, Hossu-vwrokoshi ; the panicles of this graminous-
plant are used to make brooms and brush on account of their
numerous long stiff branches. Their small grains are eaten.

300. Kochla SCOparia, Schrad., Jap. Hahakigi, Hokr-
gusa ; an annual herb of the order Chenopodiacea3 cultivated in
the field and garden. The stem is about 3 fts. high and is
ramified into many branches. In summer it yields small ape talons
flowers which are succeeded with small seeds. When full grown the
stem is cut and dried and used as a broom. Its young leaves are
edible when boiled, and its fruits are also consumed by the name
of Touipuri in the province of Ugo. Besides this, the articles used
for making brooms are Chamaerops hair, bamboo branches, straw
and sorghum panicles, branches of Yashio- azalea and Lindera
hypoleuca, stems of Pertya scandens, panicles of evergreen
Eularia, fibrous roots of Ischaemum sieboldi, etc.



SI

301. Sapindus mukurosi, Gartn., Jap. Mukuroji,
Tsiibii ; a deciduous tree of the order Sapindacese cultivated
in several countries, growing about 20 fts. high. It produces
small flowers in panicles, which are succeeded with round fruits
of the size of about J inch. When fully ripen the outer covering
with wrinkles is yellowish brown in colour and includes a round
hard black seed. The extract of this covering or skin is used for
washing, and the black hard seeds are used to make buddists'
rosaries and playing buckles.

302. Gledistschia japoilica, Miq., Jap. Saikachi / a
deciduous tree of the order Leguminocece. It grows wild or in
gardens. It attains a height of 20-30 fts., the stem being provided
with sharpe thorns. In summer it produces small flowers, which
are succeeded with pods 9-10 inches long and 1 inch or more
wide, containing small flat seeds. The juice of this pod is used
for washing, and is said it cleans well without impairing the
articles, and is much used to wash furnitures. The young leaves
are eaten when boiled.

303. Ilex Integra, T/i., Jap. Mochi-no-ki ; an evergreen
tree of the order lllicinea?. It grows wild, but is much cultivated
in gardens. It attains a height of 20-30 fts. It bears male and
female flowers on separate plants. In summer it opens yellowish
white flowers which are succeeded with red pea-sized berries.
Bird-lime is prepared from the bark by pounding.

304. Trochodendron aralioides, .9. et Z., Jap. Yama-
kuruma, Q-mochi-no-ki ; an evergreen tree of the order Magnolia-
ceae growing wild on mountains, attaining a height of about 10
fts. In summer it produces umbrella-like flowers which are
succeeded with small pea-sized berries. From the bark of this
tree bird-lime is prepared by pounding and washing several times.

305. LllfFa petola, Ser., Jap. Hechima, Ito-iiri ; an
annual climbing herb of the order Cuturbitacea3 cultivated in
fields. In summer it produces yellow flowers, male and female
separately on the same plant. In autumn its fruits ripen, about.



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1 1 Its. long and with, a diameter of 3 or 4 inches. The inside of
the pepo is filled with a fibrous web which is bleached till it
becomes white and soft and is used as an washing article like a
sponge. The fibres are also used for many other purposes as to
line the inside of slippers and hats, and to make summer shirts.
The young fruits and leaves are eaten as vegetables.

305. b. Luffa petola, Ser., var., Jap. Naga-hccJdma.
Riukiu-hechima ; a variety of the preceding, with its pepo about
6 fts. long, and of the same use.

306. Lagenaria VUlgaris, Ser., Jap. Hioian ; an an-
nual climber of the order Cucurbitacene cultivated in fields. There
are male and female flowers separately on the same plant. In
summer evening it opens its white flowers, and closes them in the
morning. Its fruits are ripen in autumn, and they are used to
make liquid- vessels by taking out the soft pulp and seeds, after
the pepoes were steeped in water, and drying afterwards. They
resemble cucurbita pepoes (136), differing only in forms. The
shape of the pepo is just like 2 balls with a narrow joint. The
length of the fruit is about 1 ft. There are many varieties, and
the common kind is eaten as the cucurbita pepo, but the variety
bearing small fruits can not be eaten, having a bitter taste.

306. b. Lagenaria VUlgaris, Ser., var., Jap. v-hiotan;
a variety of the preceding having a very large fruit. Generally
only one fruit is left on each plant, and for getting a very large
fruit several plants are grafted together.

3O6. c. Lagenaria vulgaris, Ser., var., Jap. Shaku-
hiotan, Hisago, Tsuru-kubi ; a variety of 306 with a long neck
at the top of the fruit just like a handle, its under part forming a
round body. It is just like a dipper in form and is used as a
dipper.

306. d. Lagenaria VUlgaris, Ser., var., Jap. Hyakii-

nari-Jiiotan ; a variety of 306 with small fruits about 4 inches



83

long. It is used as a small vessel like the preceding. As the
taste is bitter, it can not be eaten.

306. 6. Lagenaria VUlgaris, Ser., var., Jap. Sennari-
Jiyotan ; a variety of the former, but with smaller fruits which are
about \\ inches long.

307. Gymnogongms pinnulata, Harvey, Jap. Tsuno- ^
mata ; an alga? growing in group on rocks in water, attaining a
length of 6-7 inches. It is forked in several parts. When fresh,
;the colour is purple, but when bleached it turns to a yellowish
white. It is used as paste or to wash hair. It is eaten when
boiled in a state of jelly. In the harbour CJiQ-shi, the jelly is
called linuma-konnyaku. There is a variety with a very large
size, a foot long and 3-4 inches broad, and a variety called Ko-
tsuno-mata is about 2i inches long growing in shallow water.
They are all of a similar use.

A/

307. b. Gloeopeltis coliformis, Harvey, Jap. Funori ;
a species of _ algae growing on rocks where the tide ebbs. Its form
is like that of a hollow tube at first, but it is gradually divided
into branches which are about 4 inches long. When fresh it is
dark purple, but when washed and bleached it turns to a pale
yellow colour. It is made into a flat sheet, and then it is called
bleached funori and is used for its mucilaginous paste. It is also
simply dried and eaten as food. The form is different according
to the places where it grows. That found in the province of
Satsinna is superior in form and quality.

3O7. c. Gymnogongms ( ? ), Jap. Saimi, Hachijo-fu-
nori ; a species of algne resembling the preceding, but with solid
stems. When bleached, it is pale yellow, hard, and strong in
texture. It is used for its mucilaginous paste. It is produced
abundantly in the Island of HachiJQ.

307. d. Chondrus plotynus, G. Ag., Jap. Hotokeno-
nriini ; a species of algae growing in .the iceland of Yezo and the
northern province of the main land. It resembles the large leaves



84

of Tsuno-mata in form, though thinner with two divisions. "When?
fresh it is dark purple, but it turns pale yellow when bleached..
It is used for its mucilaginous paste.



CHAPTER XIV. OIL AND WAX PLANTS.

This Chapter comprises the plants yielding oil, wax, lacquer,,
etc. The oil is used for food, lamps, and various industrial pur-
poses. The wax is used to make candles and other articles. The
lacquer is the necessary ingredient for lacquer work. Insect-wax.
is the production of insects.

308. Brassica chinensis, L,, var., Eape, Jap. Abur et-
na ; a cultivated biennial plant of the order Cruciferoe. Late in.
autumn the young plants are produced, and late in spring they
shoot up flower-stalks to the height 3-4 fts., sometimes 8-9 fts.
Early in summer the ripen seeds are gathered and are called rape-
seeds. An oil is extracted from the seeds, and it is used for
cookery, lamps, and several other purposes. The flower-buds and*
leaves are eaten by boiling or preserving in salt.

309. Sesamum indicum, Z., Sesamum, Jap. Gama ;
an annual cultivated plant of the order Bignoniaceae. The seeds
are sown late in spring, and the 4-sided stem grows 3-4 fts. high,
bearing at leaf-axils labiate flowers which are succeeded with long,
capsules, splitting longitudinally when fully ripe. They contain a
great many fine seeds. There are three varieties, black, white,
and brown coloured. The latter variety is the best to take oil.
The oil is principally used for dressing food. The grilled seeds
are used to add to cakes, salads, etc.

310. Perilla ocymoides, L., Jap. Yegoma ; an annual
cultivated plant of the order Labiates. Its seeds arc sown late in
spring, and its stems grow about 2 fts. high. It produces long
panicles from its branches, bearing small white labiate flowers. Ire
autumn the seeds ripen and are gathered to take oil. As this oil!



85

lias a drying nature, it is used to oil water-proof cloaks and
Ibamboo umbrellas, and also for cookery. It is often used to
mix with rape seed oil to prevent the freeging of the latter. The
seeds are used instead of Sesamum seeds on grilling and also for
deeding small birds.

311. Camellia japonica, L., Jap. Tsubaki, Yabu-
tsubaki ; an evergreen tree of the order Ternstroemiaceae, growing
in warm provinces to a height of 20-30 fts. Early in spring it
produces red flowers which are succeeded by round fruits. The
fruits ripen at the end of autumn, when the shell splits out and
^exposes 2 or 3 dark hard seeds, which are gathered for oil called
TsJtbaki-abiira or Kino-mi-abura. The oil is used for food or
industrial purposes. The Islands of Idsu produce a great deal of
this oil. The seeds of Camellia sasanqua also yield an oil, which
is called KatasJii-no-abura in the provinces of KytisJiiii, and is
used for the smilar purposes. Tea-seeds give also an oil.

312. Bicinus communis, Z., Jap. Tv-gama* T6-no-
jroma ; an annual plant of the order Euphorbiaceae. The seeds
are sown in spring and grow to a height of 8-9 fts. The leaves
are broad and palmate. Male arid female flowers are separated on
the same plant. The fruits are of the size of a finger head and
covered with small thorns. One fruit contains 3 seeds, which are
oval and white and dark variegated. From the seeds a thick oil is
pressed out, being used to put in ink for stamps and for medicine
And industrial purposes.

313. Elaeococca cordata, R. Br.^ Jap. Abura-giri,
Dokuye, Korobi ; a deciduous tree of the order Euphorbiaceae,
frequently cultivated in warm provinces. It grows about 10 fts.
high, branching much. It is a diaecious plant. The leaves are
large and broad, and 3, 5, or 7 lobed. The flowers appear at the
Lead and are very pretty, having 5 pink petals. In autumn the
ripe fruits are collected to make an oil. The fruits are round
and contain 3-4 seeds in each. The oil is thick and poisonous,
and is used for lighting and to make oil-paper.



86

314. Cephalotaxus drupacea, S. et Z. t Jap. Imigaya r

Hebo-gaya ; an evergreen tree of the order Cohiferse, growing,
wild everywhere in mountains. It is also cultivated for oil. The
stem attains a height of about 20 fts. It is a diaecious plant. In
April it blooms, and its fruits ripen late in autumn. The fruits
are red, oval, and about 1 inch long. Oil is pressed out from the
nuts, but it is only used for lighting, as it is poisonous.

315. Litsaea glauca, Sieb.,. Jap. Shiro-damo, Aka-damo r
Shiro-tabu ; an evergreen tree of the order Lauraceae growing in
warm regions. The stem attains a height of about 20-30 fts.
The leaves are oval, tapering at both ends, and green on the upper
and white on the under side. In late autumn, small flowers appear
on the branches. In the winter of the next year red bean-sized
oval fruits are produced. From the kernels of the fruits an oil is
pressed out. The oil is called Tabu*no-abura in KiusJiiu pro-
vinces, and is used for lighting, but its quality is inferior.

316. Lindera praecox, Blume., Jap. Abura-chan, Mura-
dachi ; a deciduous tree of the order Lauraceae, growing wild
everywhere. Its stem attains to a height of about 10 fts. It
bears yellowish white small flowers before its leaves appear in
spring. Its fruits ripen late in autumn. The fruits are quite
round and have the size of a small finger. Oil is taken from the
kernels, and is used for lighting. ,

317. Lindera triloba, Blume., Jap. Ukonbana, Hata*
tikon, Shiro-moji ; a deciduous tree of the order Lauracea?, grow-
ing wild in mountainous regions of cold countries. The stem is
about 10 fts. high. In spring it bears pale yellow small flowers
before the leaves appear. It is a diaecious plant. The fruits
ripen in autumn and are quite round, being about \ inch in size.
Oil is taken and used for the same purpose as the preceding.

317. b. Styrax japonicum, 5. et Z., Jap. Ye go, Chisha-
no-ki ; the green fruits of this tree (546) ripen late in autumn.
They have about the size of a bean, and enclose a dark yellow
-hard nut, from which oil is taken as the preceding.



87

318. Cinnamomum pedunculatum, Nees., Jap.
H-nikkei, Koga-no-ki, Knsu-tabn ; an evergreen tree of the

order Lauraceae growing wild in warm regions. The stem is 20-
30 fts. high. In summer long branched peduncles come forth
from the axils of leaves, and produce yellowish flowers, being
succeeded with black fruits late in autumn. From the kernels
wax is taken for candles. The wax is oily and soft.

319. LigUStrum ibota, Sicb., Jap. Koba-no-ibo1a ; a
half- deciduous tree of the order Oleaceas, growing wild every-
where. The stem is 5-6 fts. high. In summer small white
flowers appear in panicles, and in winter purplish black fruits are
produced. The kernels of this and other similar fruits are used
for coffee. On the stems of this and other similar trees a waxy
matter is accumulated by the action of insects. The wax prepared
from it is hard and lustrous, and is used for various industries.

320. Rhus SUCCOdanea, Z., Jap. Haji, RQ-no-ki, Haje-
iirushi ; a deciduous tree of the order Anacardiaceas cultivated in
warm regions. The stem is about 10 fts. high. In summer
small flowers appear in panicles on branches. In autumn the
fruits ripen, which are round and flat and J inch in size. "Wax is
taken from them.

321. RllUS vernicifera, D.C., Jap. Urushi-no-ki ; a
deciduous tree of the order Anacardiacete, cultivated in cold re-
gions, growing 20-30 fts. high. The leaves are large and
compound, forming pinnates. In summer diascious small flowers
appear in panicles. The fruit is almost the same as the preceding,
and also wax is taken. Lacquer juice is obtained from the stem
by splitting it. The juice thus obtained is an important ingredient
for lacquer wares.

322. Rhus trichocarpa, Miq., Jap. Yama-urushi ; a
variety of the former, growing wild everywhere. Its fruits are
-quite the same in shape and use as the former, though smaller.



$8

322. b. Sapium sebiferum, Roxb., Jap. To./taje, Nan-
kin-haje ; a deciduous tree of the order Euphorbiaceae cultivated
in warm regions, growing 20-30 fts. high. In summer it pro-
duces monaecious flowers, and late in autumn the fruits ripen.
The fruit is inch in size, and encloses 3 seeds. The fruit is
covered with a white powder, which is used to make wax. A
lighting oil is taken from the seeds.

Note. There are still numerous plants giving oil. Some of
the principals are Soy-bean (22), Ground nut (46), various species
of Brassica, nuts of Torreya nucifera (217), Juglans (218, 219,
220), Hazels (223, 224), and Fagus syivestris (516), and seeds of
Cotton (327), Carthamus tinctorius (367), Sun-flower (854), &c.,
but these are not described here. Generally in Japan Cereals and
Legumes are not used for oil, but in China Soy-bean is much used
for this purpose. Various oils used as medicine are also omitted
Jiere.



VOLUME II.

CHAPTER XV. TEXTILE PLANTS.

This Chapter contains the plants, which give fibrous and
flexible materials for threads and clothes. Therein are also in-
cluded those, which stems, barks, and leaves being flexible are
<used for ropes, nets, brush-hairs, &c.

323. Cannabis sativa, Z., Hemp, Jap. Asa ; an annual
plant of the order Urticaceae. Its seeds are sown in spring, and
when fully grown its four sided stem is 7-8 fts. high. It is
diaecious. In late summer the stems are harvested, and the'bark
is peeled off for thread and cords, and also for paper. The peeled
stems are reduced to charcoal and used for gunpowder. The seeds
are used as a spice or to make oil.



324. Baehmeria nivea,-' y/00fc. et Am., China grass, Jap.
Karamushi , Mao ; a perennial herb of the order Urticaceae. It
is growing wild everywhere, but it is better to be cultivated in
fields. In spring its stem grows 3-4 fts. high, having the two
sexes of flowers separately on the same plant. Late in summer
the stem is cut off, and its bark is peeled for fibre. In warm
regions it is cut 3 times and in cold parts twice in one year.
There are several varieties, from all of which fibre may be taken.

325. Urtica thunbergiana, 5. et Z., Jap. Irakusa / a
perennial Urticaceous plant growing wild. In spring it shoots
forth a stem to a height of 2-3 fts. Its leaves and stems are pro-
vided with thorns which sting sharply like a wasp. Its leaves are
disposed alternately or opposit on the stem. In late summer the
stems are cut for fibre, which is used for the same purpose as the
preceding. Those grpwing in mountains and in Hokkaido have a



90

height of 6-7 fts. The soft young stems and leaves are eaten by
boiling.

326. UlmUS montana, Sm., Jap. Atsusht, Atsuni, Ohiyo-
damo ; a deciduous tree of the order Urticaceae growing wild in
mountains of northern provinces. The stem is about 10 fts. high.
Early in summer, it bears bunches of small green flowers, which
are succeeded with small flat scale-like fruits. The stiff bark of
the stem is peeled off and used for fastening instead of a rope.
In Yezo the fibre is used for weaving

327. Gossypium indicum, Lam., Cotton, Jap. Kiivata,
Wata ; an animal cultivated plant of the order Malvaceae. It is
sown in spring, and attains to a height of 2-3 fts. in summer. A
yellow flower is produced in, each eaf-axil, and it is succeeded
with a fruit in the form of a peach. When the fruit ripen the-
capsule bursts and cotton is exposed. The quality of the fibre is
different according to the varieties, but it is all used for spinning.
The oil pressed out from the cottonseeds is used for cookery
and lighting.



\



328. Abutilon avicennae, 6^r/;* M Jap. Ickibi, Kiri-
asa ; an annual cultivated plant of the order Malvaceae. It is
sown in spring and attains to a height of 4-5 fts. In summer, it
bears 5 petaled small yellow flowers in each axils of leaves, being
succeeded with fruits. The fibre got from the bark of the stem is
white and silky. The peeled stem is burnt to charcoal and used
as a tinder.

329. Hibiscus syriacus, L., Jap. Mukuge, Hachisu ; a
deciduous shrub of the order Malvaceae cultivated in fields, grow-
ing 6-7 Its. high and in" 1 group. It is a good plant for hedges, and
thrives well in wet places. Late in summer, its flowers open in
the morning and fade in the evening. They are of different
colours and of single or double petals. The bark gives fibre,
which is also used to make Mino (farmers' rain coat), which is a
famous production in the provinces of Hki and Inaba.



9.1

330. Hibiscus hamabo, 5. et Z., Jap. Hainabv ; a de-
ciduous plant of the order Malvaceae growing wild along the sea
coasts in warm provinces. Its stem attains to a height of about.
10 fts. Early in summer, it blooms at the top of the branches and
in the axils of the leaves. The flowers are like those of cotton,
with yellow petals, purple at the base. A strong fibre is got from
the bark, and is used as a rope.

331. Urena sinuata, L. t Jap. Boiideukwa ; a deciduous
shrub of the order Malvaceae, growing in warm regions and attain-
ing to a height of 2-3 fts. The leaves are cut into 5 segments
with green and white variegation. In autumn it blooms bright
crimson flowers. The fibre taken from the bark is used as a rope.


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