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Seeds of Trade

 
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adrenal cortex
the outer portion of the adrenal gland that produces anti-inflammatory agents.

aldehyde
abbreviation of alcohol dehydrogenatum (dehydrogenated alcohol), meaning compounds containing the -CO radical attached to a hydrocarbon free radical and a hydrogen atom.

alkaloids
colourless, bitter and often toxic organic bases found in seed plants as a defense against herbivores and insects.

alum
a potassium aluminum sulfate or ammonium aluminum sulfate used as an astringent or as an emetic.

analgesic
a drug that relieves pain without loss of consciousness.

antibiotic
a substance derived from either a micro-organism or a semi-synthetic substance, able to inhibit or kill another micro-organism.

antiseptic
an agent which destroys or prevents the growth of bacteria.

antispasmodic
that which prevents or relieves convulsions or spasms.

apomictic
produced or reproduced by apomixis.

apomixis
any form of asexual reproduction, in particular reproduction by seeds produced without sexual fusion.

arthropod
used to describe any member of the invertebrate Phylum Arthropoda. These usually have a segmented body, jointed appendages and a chitinous exoskeleton, e.g. crustaceans, insects, or spiders.

astringent
that which constricts or contracts soft organic tissues.

atabrine
trademark used for used for quinacrine, an antimalarial drug derived from acridine.

biennial
a plant that grows vegetatively in its first year of life, and that then flowers, fruits and dies in its second year.

biosynthesis
the production of complex molecules by a living organism.

bitter resin
natural resins are chiefly plant or tree secretions that have a glassy appearance with a slightly yellow to brown colouring. 'Bitter resins' are medicinal resins.

bouquet garni
a herb mixture that is cooked with a dish but removed before serving, usually either tied together or enclosed in a porous container.

bract
a leaf, often modified or reduced, growing from the axil of which a flower or an inflorescence arises.

bush
a densely-branched, low shrub.

carbohydrate
various neutral compounds of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen, most of which are formed by plants to produce a major class of food for animals.

carminative
relieving gastric flatulence.

catalytic cracking
the breaking down of heavy hydrocarbons of crude petroleum using a catalyst of silica or aluminum gel.

cellulose
a polysaccharide of glucose units that forms plant cell walls.

centifolia
a class of roses hybridized by the Dutch to contain more than one hundred petals, sometimes referred to as 'cabbage roses'.

chromosome
a DNA-containing body which contains most of an individual's genes, found in viruses, prokaryotic organisms and the cell nucleus of eukaryotic organisms.

cinchonidine
an antimalarial alkaloid.

cinchonine
an antimalarial alkaloid.

cloning
the production of organisms, cells or micro-organisms from a single parent by asexual means.

crystallisation
the slow formation of a crystal from solution or melt.

cultigen
a domestic or cultivated organism of a species or variety whose wild ancestor is unknown.

cultivar
an assemblage of cultivated plants clearly distinguished by specific characters that originate and persist under cultivation.

cuticle
layer of cutin found in some plant cell walls to reduce water loss, as well as restrict entry of carbon dioxide.

cyanogenetic glucosides
a combination of poisonous cyanide and sugars found in plant pits or foliage.

decortication
the removal of the outer coverings, such as bark or husks, from fiber or seed.

dehiscence
the spontaneous split at maturity of a reproductive body to release enclosed seeds or spore.

dioecious
having male reproductive organs in one individual, and female reproductive organs in another.

diploid
an organism with two sets of chromosomes, one from each parent.

distichous
the arrangement of leaves on a stem in two diametrically opposite rows.

drill
can mean:
  (1) a heavy, durable, woven, twilled cotton fabric, or
  (2) an implement used for sowing crop seed.

espalier
a plant trained to grow flat against a wall.

essential oil
volatile oils that provide plants with their characteristic odours, often used in flavourings and perfumes.

expectorant
that which promotes the coughing up of mucous from the respiratory tract.

family
a group of genera taxonomically ordered according to related forms above genus, but below order.

febrifuge
that which reduces fever.

ferruginous
that which either contains iron, or resembles the colour of iron rust.

fines herbes
a mixture of herbs used for garnishing or seasoning a dish.

flavonoids
a group of aromatic compounds that includes common pigments; for example anthocyanins, which are the soluble glycoside pigments that produce red and blue colouring in plants.

gallic acid
an acid found in tannins, used in dyes and as photographic developer.

gallotannin
a synonym of tannic acid, which occurs in many trees as a colourless amorphic mass with a bitter taste and astringent properties.

galls
the abnormal localised swelling or outgrowth on a plant following an attack by a pest or parasite.

gelatine
a colourless, odourless and tasteless glue obtained from boiling animal tissues, used in food, photographic films and glue.

genetic variation
the variation between individual organisms in a population due to genetic differences.

genome
the entire genetic material of an organism.

genus
a group of species taxonomically ordered according to related forms above species, but below family.

germination
the growth in a seed, spore or zygote, particularly after a dormant period.

glycoside
any compound containing a carbohydrate molecule that can be converted into a sugar and nonsugar by hydrolytic cleavage.

haploid
having half the number of chromosomes characteristic of somatic cells.

heeled cuttings
stem cuttings taken from new shoots with a small portion of the old shoot.

hexaploid
having six times the number of chromosomes characteristic of somatic cells.

homeotic
relating to a gene that produces a major shift in structural development.

humidity
the degree of wetness, in particular that of the atmosphere.

humus
a black or dark brown material forming the organic portion of the soil, usually a mixture based on partial decomposition of animal and plant matter.

hybrid
the offsrping of a cross between two different species, races, varieties or strains.

hydrolysable
that which can undergo hydrolysis, a chemical process that splits a molecular bond to add the hydrogen cation and hydroxide anion of water.

incense
the odour from some gums and spices when burned.

inflorescence
a discrete group of flowers on an individual plant.

infusion
the steeping in liquid, such as water, without boiling to extract the soluble constituents.

laterite
a residual clay produced by igneous rock decay under tropical climates, red in color and rich with iron oxides and aluminum hydroxide.

lignin
a constituent of most plant secondary wall cells to make them more rigid, waterproof and resistant to pathogen attack.

lincrusta
a thick, embossed wallpaper.

loess
an unstratified, buff- to yellow-brown, loamy clay originating in arid regions and transported by the wind.

linolenic acid
a liquid, unsaturated fatty acid essential for the nutrition of some animals, found especially in drying oils such as linseed oil.

menthol
a crystalline alcohol that has the odor and cooling properties of peppermint, found especially in mint oils.

meristem
a formative plant tissue specialised in dividing indefinitely to give rise to new cells that then differentiate into definitive tissues and organs.

mesocarp
the middle layer of a fruit's wall.

molasses
a thick, brown syrup that is separated from raw sugar in sugar manufacture, or from boiling down sweet vegetable or fruit juice.

monogerm form
producing a fruit that gives rise to a single plant, rather than a group of seedlings.

montane
relating to the zone of relatively cool, moist upland slopes dominated by large coniferous trees below the timberline.

oestrogenic substances
substances containing oestrogen, a group of sex hormones inducing the period of sexual excitement in female mammals.

oleic acid
a monounsaturated fatty acid found in natural fats and oils, which oxidise readily when exposed to air.

ornamental
a plant cultivated for its visual beauty rather than its usefulness.

parthenocarpy
the production of fruit without fertilisation, either spontaneously or by artificial hormonal induction.

peduncle
the stalk of an inflorescence, bearing flowers or fruit.

pentaploid
having five times the number of chromosomes characteristic of somatic cells.

perennial
a plant that lives more than two years.

piperitone
a colourless oil with a peppermint odour.

ploidy
the degree of repetition of the number of chromosomes of somatic cells.

polystichous
any part of a plant arranged in several rows.

poultice
a soft, heated and sometimes medicated mass spread on cloth and applied to sores.

propagation
the horticultural reproduction of plants by sexual or asexual means.

prophylactic
anything that prevents or guards from infectious disease.

quinquina
a drink that contains quinine, a bitter agent with antimalarial properties.

resin
a flammable organic substance obtained from plant or tree secretions, and used for varnishes, printing inks, plastics and medicines.

ricin
a poisonous protein found in castor beans.

saponin
steroid vegetable glycosides that are characterized by the property of producing a soapy lather toxic to many animals.

scandent
a climbing mode of growth in plants.

scion
a detached, living piece of a plant inserted into the stock to provide the aerial parts when a graft is made in horticulture.

section
a taxonomic group, usually a subdivision of a genus.

species
a group of individuals taxonomically ordered according to common attributes and designated by a common name.

standard
can mean:
  (1) a herb or shrub grown with an erect main stem to resemble a tree in form,
  (2) a fruit tree grafted on a stock that will not induce dwarfing,
  (3) the large upper petal of a legume flower, or
  (4) one of the three incurved petals of an iris flower.

sterile
incapable of producing offspring, fruit or spores.

styptic
that which contracts or binds bleeding.

succulent
a plant whose stems and leaves have a high water content to prevent dehydration in arid environments.

sucrose
a sweet, crystalline sugar naturally occurring in many plants, especially in sugarcane or sugar beets.

tallow oil
an oil obtained from pressing tallow (suet), and used as a lubricant.

tannin
a colourless, amorphic substance found in many trees with a bitter taste and astringent properties used for tanning, dyeing, making of ink and medicine.

tawed
a skin dressed by a dry process, usually with salt or alum.

tetraploid
having four times the number of chromosomes characteristic of somatic cells.

thymol
an aromatic phenol with antiseptic properties found especially in thyme oil, or synthesised for use as a preservative or fungicide.

tillering
to produce stalks from the base or the lower axils of a plant.

tonic
can mean:
  (1) a drug that restores and stimulates health,
  (2) a preparation for hair or scalp, or
  (3) a flavoured, carbonated drink.

triploid
having three times the number of chromosomes characteristic of somatic cells.

tuberous
a plant with a short, fleshy underground stem (tuber) that acts as both storage or has the potential to produce a new plant.

vegetative propagation
the horticultural reproduction of plants by asexual means.

volatile oil
an oil that changes readily to vapour.

woody plant
a plant that undergoes secondary growth which results in wood and bark, as opposed to herbaceous plants that have no persistent woody tissues.

zein
an Indian corn protein used to make adhesives, coatings, plastics, printing inks and plastics.