Summer forests are free and generous. And there is something in them - and mushrooms, and berries, and edible herbs! Just do not waste and do not collect anything. Any activity in the forest should not ruin the forest and not be detrimental to ourselves. Particular care must be taken when collecting berries. Inexperience can turn into misfortune.
The most dangerous in our forests are the wolf bast berries. What is this plant?
Daphne ordinary (Daphne mezereum)
... Unapproved April forest. Hurriedly gaining heat is his stale leafy litter, which the green shoots of grass drill with drills. From the sun's rays and warm air, the crowns and trunks of the trees thoroughly warmed up, and now the life-giving sweet juice wanders uncontrollably. And already the first flowers delight the eye of the observer. How not to admire, for example, Daphne, popularly nicknamed the wolf bast. Daphne shorty herself, her bushes with a elbow or a little higher. But fragrant and pretty! Scarlet flowers from top to bottom are humiliated by thin branches, as if a forest bush has been removed by bows. They call the wolf's bast forest lilac, for a similar smell. Only for a long time not to inhale it - stupefying and dizzy. After all, a wolf's bast, in another way, a thistle, a daphne, is a poisonous plant, and poisonous in all its parts.
The wolf’s cortex contains acute glycoside daphnin and a yellowish resin meserein. This resin can be found in the roots and fruits of the bush, it is meserein that makes it poisonous. Drying does not destroy the active principle, and the dried plant remains burning, toxic. But the most dangerous thing is the wolf bast berries. Ten to fifteen are the lethal dose for humans. Berries, in addition to meserein, also accumulate poison coccinnin, which causes severe poisoning. The victim beats a cramp, he feels colic and breakdown; the pupils of his eyes are dilated, inflamed. With severe poisoning, the patient suffers from vomiting, diarrhea, and then completely faints. His stomach is immediately cleaned, as the antidote is allowed to swallow ice and mucous drink - jelly or broth.
It is necessary to protect children from the wolf bast. Most often, it is children who are poisoned by insidious berries. In the summer, at the time of campaigns for strawberries and blueberries, they unknowingly can take the fruits of Daphne for edible and collect them. In appearance, the wolf bast berries are similar to red currants, but they can not be confused categorically. It is necessary to show the children on the spot that they eat food in the forest, and what should not be touched at all.
Pets, with the rarest exception, are almost not poisoned by the daphne. The burning juice of the bush scares them away. True, shepherds sometimes watched as sheep or goats plucked Daphne green without harm to themselves. In a small portion of the foliage, apparently, it is not dangerous for them. In any case, cattle are not poisoned by a daphne. Interestingly, even Daphne berries are not harmful to thrushes. They eat them without any dangerous consequences, spreading seeds all over the forest. It turns out that sowers of wolf bast are primarily birds. Swallowed berries are partially digested, the seeds, for example, remain germinating after a difficult journey along the gastrointestinal tract.
Speaking about the dangers of a poisonous plant, it is fair to say about its benefits. All the same daphne is not useless in the forest.
Judge for yourself, its early spring flowers are a magnificent bee pasture. The melliferousness of flowers is excellent. Daphne's poisonous bark can provide valuable dye for wool. The skillful use of poisons in medicine is in the interest of health. It has long been a tincture of daphne bark used for rubbing from rheumatism.
May lily of the valley (Convallaria majalis)
If a wolf's bast blooms in a bright, leafless forest, then its rival in poisonousness - the lily of the valley smells fragrant only at the beginning of summer, when the canopy is thick and encompassing. This well-known plant, in addition to the entrancing smell and completely charming appearance, is also famous for its medicinal properties. Lily of the valley drops soothe and strengthen the heart, and in this role the plant has long been featured in the pharmacopoeias of the world as a healing agent. But lily of the valley and poison. Its red berries, which are easy to find in the August forest, are especially poisonous.
Lily of the valley - perennial grass. The rhizome has creeping, like knotted cords. It is distributed mainly with the help of this rhizome, which every spring expels more and more shoots with their marvelous flowers. There are many lilies of the valley in forests and shrubs, much less often you will meet them in a flood meadow, in the midst of lush forbs. Lily of the valley berries are red, in the form of small balls. Toxic to humans. Cattle lily of the valley does not eat, with its smell and sharp juice it seems to warn: dangerous, do not come. But in the long-standing practice of shepherds, of course, one will recall the case when a cow or horse nevertheless gathered this poisonous grass. And as a result - vomiting, diarrhea, frequent urination. The animal experiences weakness, heart activity and breathing are disturbed, there is a state of paralysis. More often poisonous plants are poisoned by imported livestock, while the local one usually “knows” pasture well. Lily of the valley eagerly eats only spotted deer, but its menu is so diverse that it includes almost all of the fodder stepsons of forest herbs.
Raven Eye (Paris)
The grass, a relative of the lily of the valley, is quite poisonous - the raven eye. The plant received this bizarre folk nickname for a black berry at the end of the stem. The scientific name Paris quadrifolia is given in honor of Paris, the son of a Trojan king. Species litter “quadrifolia” hints at the structure of the whorl, which consists of four large leaves. When you come across such grass in the forest, the first thing you notice right away is the berry, the only one on the bush and black and black, with gray-gray hair - well, as there is a raven eye. Before that, the flower of the plant was also one, but it showed off for a very long time.
In the raven eye, rhizomes and fruits are especially toxic to humans, they contain a structureless substance of disgusting taste - parasti-fin. It is dangerous for both cattle and horses. That is why domestic animals shy away from the raven's eye, occasionally unless a leaf of a sheep or a goat grabs it. But small ungulate cattle are generally less susceptible to plant poisons, like birds that eat black berries in large quantities (relative to their weight) and do not poison. Stunned, cramps, paralysis - these are signs of poisoning with the raven eye. Moreover, parts of this plant act differently: the berries violate cardiac activity, the leaves have antispasmodic properties, and the rhizome causes vomiting. Of course, contact with the raven eye, especially children, is completely unacceptable. It is necessary in every possible way to prevent it.
Another poisonous plant is Voronets. With the previous grass, it, in addition to harmony, is in no way connected. The leaves of Vorontsa somewhat resemble elderberry, which is noted in the botanical (Latin) name. The whole plant is toxic, and its toxicity does not disappear entirely even when dried. Vorontsov’s berries hang with brushes; they can be black or red in color. Both are poisonous and cause severe poisoning in livestock. People usually do not touch them, but it is necessary to know insidious doubles.
And like every plant, Voronets is not useless. Earlier, from his ripe berries, black paint was dyed for dyeing wool. The black color is black, hence the “Voronets”. They were able to cook strong ink from these berries. Young leaves and branches of Vorontsov give red paint. The plant lives in forests and comes across there relatively often.
Real honeysuckle, or forest (Lonicera xylosteum)
Who is in the forest is familiar with wild honeysuckle. Its dark red fruits, sitting in pairs, densely humiliate the bush. It seems a find from the finds. But you can’t take these berries - inedible. Berries ripen in July-August, and a bush blooms in late spring. The flowers are yellowish-white, sit in two on a common axillary peduncle, pollinated by bees. Like any plant, honeysuckle is useful in the forest. Birds eat its berries. They spread the shrubbery. Sheep honeysuckle feasts leaves, extremely eager for them. But the most remarkable thing about the forest dweller is wood, hard as bone. No wonder it was once allowed on the manufacture of gun ramrods and for whips. The Vologda lace-makers tried to acquire bobbins from honeysuckle: it hurts too melodically to clatter at work.
Honeysuckle lives for a long time, 20-25 years. Gardeners bred for hedges - a durable and beautiful screen against the prevailing winds. Interestingly, edible honeysuckle is growing in Siberia and the Far East. Unlike the inedible berries, it is not red, but dark blue. Siberians consume them fresh, in jam, jelly, as well as in jelly and drinks. Edible honeysuckle is increasingly to be found in home gardens and gardens.
Protecting children from inedible berries, we must remember about such insidious fruits as berries Calla Wetland (they are red, spoiled) bought medicinal (navy blue) and bittersweet nightshadefalling in thickets of bushes. Only caution and experience will completely protect against unforeseen consequences. Neither the picker, nor even the children, can contact the unknown berries. Insidious berries are dangerous for a beginner in the forest, and this danger is associated with his ignorance. Who distinguishes them “in person”, versed in the properties of forest plants - he is out of danger.