The Universal Herbal: Impatiens Balsamina; Garden Balsam.

The Universal Herbal;
or botanical, medical and agricultural dictonary.
Containing an account of All the known Plants in the World, arranged according to the Linnean system. Specifying the uses to which they are or may be applied, whether as food, as medicine, or in the arts and manufactures.
With the best methods of propagation, and the most recent agricultural improvements.
collected from indisputable Authorities.
Adapted to the use of the farmer - the gardener - the husbandman - the botanist - the florist - and country housekeepers in general.
By Thomas Green.
Vol. I
Printed at the Caxton Press by Henri Fisher.
Printer in Ordinary to His Majesty.
Peduncles one-flowered, aggregate; leaves lanceolate, the upper ones alternate; nectaries shorter than the flower, which comes out from the joints of the stem. This plant in its wild state is about two feet high, with an upright, round, hispid, juicy, white stem, and ascending branches. Flowers red or white coloured. This plant enlarges very much by culture, and becomes very branching. “I have seen,” says. Professor Martin, “the stems seven inches in circuit, and all the parts large in proportion, branched from top to bottom, loaded with its party-coloured flowers, and thus forming a most beautiful bush.” The varieties which cultivation has produced in this elegant flower are numerous; such as white, purple, red, striped and variegated of these different colours, single and double of each. Mr. Miller particularly mentions two varieties, which may perhaps belong to some of the other species, First, the Immortal Eagle, a most beautiful plant, from the East Indies; the flowers double, much larger than those of the common sort, scarlet and white, or purple and white; and as the flowers are abundant, the plant is very valuable. Secondly, the Cockspur, from the West Indies; which has single flowers as large as the other, but never more than half double, and only with red and white stripes. This is apt to grow to a very large size before it flowers, which is very late in autumn, so that in bad seasons there will be scarcely any flowers, and the seeds seldom ripen. The common single sort will spring in the open ground; and where the seeds scatter, they will come up in the spring. But such self-sown plants do not come to flower so early as those which are raised upon a hot-bed, although they will continue later in the autumn; but to have good flowers, the plant must be raised upon a hot-bed. Gerarde directs the seeds to be sown at the beginning of April in a bed of horse-dung, and replanted abroad from the said bed into the hottest and most fertile place of the garden, when they have got three leaves apiece. — Native of the East Indies, China, Cochin-china, and Japan, where the natives use the prepared juice for dyeing their nails red. For the propagation and culture of this plant and its beautiful varieties, see the first species.

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