|HIBISCUS SABDARIFFA L. - ROSELLE.
Sorrel, Roselle, red sorrel, Florida cranberry, rosella, Indian sorrel, oseille rouge, zuring, quimbombó chino, sereni, rosa de Jamaica, vinagreira, azeda de Guiné.
Malvaceae (Mallow family).
Roselle (or Sorrel) is a tropical annual plant, originally from West Africa, growing abundantly in Suriname.
It is also an edible medicinal plant in India, China and Thailand and is used in Ayurveda medicine.
Roselle grows to 8" tall and has alternate lobed reddish leaves. The stems are also reddish.
The most important edible part is the fleshy sepal (calyx), which is intense red and tastes acid. The calyx is the part that is left over after the bloom; it is used in jelly and in juice.
The leaves and young stems are edible and used in salads or cooked as a vegetable.
Sorrel can also be used as a substitute for cranberry. Roselle is used as a coffee substitute in Africa, while (red) roselle is used as a food color in Surinam.
The enlarged fleshy, red sepals enveloping the seed capsule are used for this application.
A close relative of Roselle (Hibiscus canabinus L.common name Kenaf) is used for its fibers, a raw material in the production of paper and paperboard products.
In Taiwan, the seeds are used as a diuretic and laxative.
In Central Africa, the leaves are used externally on abscesses.
Roselle lowers blood pressure in pre- and mildly hypertensive adults.
Other applications include
Used against cough, dyspepsia, fever, hypertension, high cholesterol and for stimulating intestinal peristalsis.
Roselle also demonstrates significant anti-hyperammonemic and antioxidant activity.
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USDA zone 7 - 11.
Seeds and cuttings.
Can be grown in the temperate zones (up to zone 7) in spring to fall.
Plant in frost free spots.
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