CARAWAY (Carum carvi L)

Herbaceous, hairless, biennial plant up to 100 cm high; spindle-shaped main root. Taproot comes up from the underground forming rosettes at ground level. Leaves form a basal rosette and other cauline ones distributed lengthwise the stem. Leaves are glabrous, double or triple pinnately compound, oblong, pale green colored. The fruit or seed is a glabrous schizocarp, crescent-shaped with two gray brownish, somewhat horny mericarp and longitudinal, very scented ribs. It belongs to the Apiaceae or Umbelliferae family.

The blooming period takes place between May and June. The fruit is anise-like flavor and should be harvested in July and August, during the second year of it is cycle (biennial). Fruits are harvested before they are completely mature and when turn grey brownish. They can be dried on trays in the sun or in the shadow and the seeds are removed from the ripe fruit.

It is indigenous to Turkestan. It was probably the Arabs who introduced it to Europe through Andalusia (Spain) around IX or X century, as by XI century it was already cultivated in the south part of Spain. Caraway spontaneously sprout in Europe and Northern Asia. It extends lengthwise the mountainous zones. Its cultivated in big and small plantations.

Part used

Internal use
> Digestive disorders: meteorism, flatulence, aerophagia, gastrointestinal spasms, gastric satiety sensation, Roemheld syndrome, hyposecreting dyspepsia, hepatobiliary dyskinesia, gastroenteritis.
> Lack of appetite or inappetence.
> Intestinal parasites.
> Respiratory disorders: bronchitis, emphysema, asthma.
> Lactose deficiency.
> Diabetes.
> Hypomenorrhea, dysmenorrhea.

External use
> Dermatomycosis, otitis, wound sanitation, skin ulcers and burns.