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(Fumitory family)


About 530 species in 17 genera are found in northern (especially warm) temperate regions, a few on mountains of eastern and southern Africa (Mabberley 1997). Some authorities prefer to subsume members of this family within the Papaveraceae (Angiosperm Phylogeny Group 2003).

Fumaria (fumitory) was mentioned as a remedy for ingrowing eyelashes by Dioscorides in the First Century A.D. (Gerarde 1636).

[Summary yet to be added]

Dicentra spectabilis Lemaire
[syn. Fumaria spectabilis L.]
Bleeding Heart

A male greenhouse worker, aged 19 years, developed dermatitis of the hands, forearms and neck. A second attack followed re-exposure to this plant. Patch tests with the pulverised leaves were positive: negative with the pulverised leaves of primrose, chrysanthemum, begonia, geranium and aster. Patch tests with an alcoholic solution of an ether extract of the plant were also positive. Control tests were not recorded (Harville 1933).

Fumaria officinalis L.
Common Fumitory, Drug Fumitory, Earth Smoke, Fumewort, Gebräuchlicher Erdrauch, Gemeiner Erdrauch, Fumée de Terre, Fumeterre Officinale

[Information available but not yet included in database]


  • Angiosperm Phylogeny Group (2003) An update of the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group classification for the orders and families of flowering plants: APG II. Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society 141(4): 399-436 [doi] [url] [url-2]
  • Gerarde J (1636) The Herball or Generall Historie of Plantes. Very much enlarged and amended by Thomas Johnson citizen and apothecarye of London, 2nd edn. London: A Islip, J Norton and R Whitakers [WorldCat] [url] [url-2]
  • Mabberley DJ (1997) The Plant-Book. A portable dictionary of the vascular plants, 2nd edn. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press
  • [ + 2 further references not yet included in database]

Richard J. Schmidt

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