Common and folk names
- • Mallards
- • Mauls Common
- • Marshmallow
Parts of Plants Used
Dark green= the most popular and common use
The Marshmallow is a perennial plant in the Malvaceae family, with simple or branching roots, developed from its rhizome. The latin name Althaea is derived from the Greek ”althos” meaning ”to cure” due to its healing properties.
It has a tap-shaped, woody root, whitish yellow outside, white and fibrous within. Its stems are erect, simple or with a few lateral branches. Leaves are thick, shortly petioled, ovate and heart-shaped, slightly toothed and covered with fine, dense hairs on both sides. The flowers are large, with five petals, pale pink or pale purple in colour. Marshmallow is in flower from August to September. Marshmallow fruit is flat and round, formed of numerous capsular carpels, circularly arranged around the axis.
Marshmallow grows in saline areas, floodplains, humid and marshy embankments in Europe, Asia and North Africa. It prefers low and warm areas, moist, loose soils, lake shores or riversides.
- Used to treat respiratory system disorders
- Used in mouthwash for treating inflammation
- Used to ease ulceration of the digestive tract
- Used to alleviate cystitis and frequent urination
- Used to control blood sugar
- Used to minimize skin inflammatory processes
- Used to relieve burns, bruises, and other wounds
- Used to supports immune system
- ingredient of confectionary products
- ingredient of eastern sweet “halva”
- teas and syrups
- popular salad ingredient (leaves)
- liquid herbal extract
- dried herb
- root powder
- body cream and lotion
- ingredient for soap and shampoo
- The root extract (halawa extract) is sometimes used as flavouring in the making of a Middle Eastern snack called halva
- The father of medicine, Hippocrates, used marshmallow to remedy bruises and blood loss
- As far back as 2000BC, Egyptians combined the marshmallow root with honey. The candy was reserved for gods and royalty
- Whilst the origins of the confectionary “marshmallow” are thought to have evolved from the use of the plant for making sweet snacks, it is no longer used as an ingredient
- The Marshmallow is a common traditional food in Syria, particularly at times when other crops have failed, as the marshmallow often survives there in abundance when other foodstuffs have not
- The Marshmallow plant was considered a particular delicacy in the cuisine of ancient Rome
- The root of the marshmallow plant has been used as a natural cleaning extract for oriental carpets
- Nineteenth century doctors extracted juice from the marshmallow plant's roots and cooked it with egg whites and sugar to create a medicinal candy used to soothe children's sore throats.
- Marshmallows are widely referenced by the classic writers of ancient Greece and Rome. Pliny said: 'Whosoever shall take a spoonful of the Mallows shall that day be free from all diseases that may come to him.'
- The 15th Century Italian cookery writer Platina devotes a complete section of his book De Honesta Voluptuate et Valetudine to: “On the Seasoning of Mallow”