A variable plant, it is divided into a number of subspecies[
Some botanists regard this species as no more than a part of the one highly polymorphic species T. natans[
]. Modern treatments generaly see this taxon as T. natans[
Trapa natans bicornis (Osbeck) Makino
Common Name: Ling
An aquatic plant, floating by means of inflated petioles[
The plan is sometimes harvested from the wild for local use of its edible seed.
The raw seed contains toxins but that these are destroyed in the cooking process[
E. Asia - China, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia.
Swamps and ponds[
Plants require a high summer temperature in order to perform well, they are not frost hardy[
Succeeds in still or slowly-flowing water requiring a position in full sun and a slightly acidic water with a rich planting medium[
The plant has escaped from cultivation and invaded native environments.
This species was used for food in Neolithic Britain[
Seed - cooked. A crunchy texture with a bland flavour[
]. Rich in starch, the raw seed contains a deleterious principle that is destroyed by cooking[
]. The cooked seed can be dried and ground into a powder[
The flowers are astringent in fluxes[
The fruit is used in the treatment of fever and sunstroke[
The plant is anticancer, antipyretic and tonic[
Seed - it quickly loses its vitality if it is allowed to become dry. Either sow immediately, or store in jars of cold water. Place one seed in each pot and submerge them under a few centimetres of water.
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