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botanical name:
Vitex agnus-castus
Vitex agnus-castus © Deeproot Plant Base
common name:  Chaste tree, Agnus-castus
family:  Verbenaceae
characteristics: shrub, scented/aromatic
height: 3.00m
width: 2.50m
growth rate: fast
growth habit: bushy
leaf colour: dark green
flower colour: violet
main season: Summer
edible symbol edible
medicinal symbol medicinal
aspect: full sun
conditions: moist soil, coastal
preferred soil pH: any
minimum temp: -6°C
USDA zone: 9 to 10
description:
Large shrub for mild locations, but tolerant of salty, sea winds. Open habit with erect stems of dark green leaves. New shoots and the undersides of the divided leaves are covered with velvety grey hairs. Long spikes of small, tubular violet-blue flowers produced at the branch tips in early autumn. Flowers are fragrant and the foliage is strongly aromatic when crushed.

cultivation:
Full sun and well drained soil. Needs a sheltered position, such as in front of a sunny wall, in cold areas.

usage:
The seeds have been used as a pepper substitute and the leaves as a spice and medicinal herb. Used to treat premenstrual syndrome and menopusl problems.
Branches are used for basket making.
Flowers are attractive to bees.

other notes:
From Southern Europe.
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