Couroupita guianensis. Geographic Distribution: Brazil (Amazon) Guyanas, Costa Rica and Antilles It is a very tall tree, from 8 to 15 meters in height, with a trunk ranging from 30 to 50 centimeters in diameter. The wood is light and easy to cut. The leaves are clustered at the tip of the branches. The fruits are big and globular, heavily-scented and commonly called cannonballs. The flowers are pink, with a sweet smell. The flowers and fruits are spread on the trunk with blooming between the months of September and March. The wood is used in the industry and the fruit is used to produce calabashes and gourds.
Agave attenuata Salm. (Asparagaceae) It has thick leaves with light green to greyish color and a long cylindrical inflorescence with many small flowers that can originate new sprouts. It is widely used in landscaping, harmonizing well with rocky or tropical gardens.
Eichhornia crassipes Kunth. (Pontederiaceae) It was introduced in the water systems of Brazilian cities due to its ability of absorbing polluting agents, acting as a natural filter.
Rosmarinus officinalis L. (Lamiaceae) Used as a spice for meats, fish, vinegars and olive oils. In popular culture it is used under the pillow to scare away the bad dreams and as an amulet against bad luck. Rosemary also has been used against depression, rheumatism and acne.
Carapa guianensis Aubl. (Meliceae) Geographic Distribution Geográfica: Central and South America (Amazon). Big tree reaching 30 meter high with a trunk ranging from 50 to 120 cm in diameter and a thick grey bark. The leaves ar large and composite reaching 1 meter long. Has small red and yellow flowers and capsular fruits. The wood of this species has economical value, being hard but easy to work with. It is used in shipbuilding, building constructions and in carpentry. From the bark many medicinal oils are extracted. The use of the seed bagasse on candlemaking was developed at the Oswaldo Cruz foundation. The smell generated by these candles can repel mosquitoes, including the Aedes aegypti, that transmits dengue and yellow fevers.
Artemisia vulgaris L. (Asteraceae) It is used in Europe since the ancient times as a medicine against fatigue and as a protection against evil spirits. The Aztecs and the Indians use it in rituals and in medicine since it has analgesic and anti-spasmodic properties among others.
Ravenala madagascariensis J.F.Gmel.(Strelitziaceae) Geographic Distributio: Madagascar Has a stem similar to the palm trees and leaves exactly like banana leaves, in the shape of huge hand fans with white flowers. It is economically important in the making of paper. Its vulgar name is due to the storage capacity at the base of its leaves of a reasonable quantity of water that used to be drank by travellers. Teachers can use this specieas of a way to correlate the water consumption in the past with current environmental problems such as acid rain and diseases that are spread by water.
Aloe vera (L.) Burm.f. (Asphodelaceae) Used widely in medicine to treat skin diseases such as acne, burns, psoriasis, Hansens disease, etc. There are reports of its usage in ancient civilizations such as Egypt and Greece, and in biblical quotations.
Sedum dendroidum Moc. & Sessé ex DC. (Crassulaceae) Known by its ornamental and medicinal qualities. Its inflorescence is made of many small yellow flowers. It can be used to heal wounds and as an anti-inflammatory or moisturizing substance.
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