/i fed"reuh, ef"i dreuh/, n.
any of various plants of the genus Ephedra, growing in dry regions and having branching stems with dry scalelike leaves.
[ < NL (Linnaeus) < Gk ephédra the horsetail plant, lit., sitting (upon a place), equiv. to ep- EP- + hédra seat, sitting (see CATHEDRA)]

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▪ gnetophyte genus
      the only genus of the family Ephedraceae (division Gnetophyta), an evolutionally isolated group of low, straggling, or climbing gymnospermous desert shrubs and the only family in the order Gnetales of the division Gnetophyta. Ephedra contains 65 species, among them the Asiatic plants known as ma huang, sources of the decongestant drug ephedrine. The joint pine of the eastern Mediterranean region is Ephedra fragilis. The North American species include the plants joint fir and Mormon tea bush, sources of food and medicinals. The leaves, reduced to scales about one centimetre long, are opposite or whorled about the nodes of green branchlets that resemble those of the horsetail. In certain anatomical and reproductive features, the plants are close to the angiosperms. A species of Ephedra grows in Kashmir at about 5,300 metres (nearly 17,400 feet), the highest altitude at which vascular plants are known to occur.

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Universalium. 2010.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Ephedra — Ephedra …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Éphédra — Ephedra Ephedra …   Wikipédia en Français

  • éphédra — ● éphédra nom masculin (latin scientifique ephedra, du grec ephedra) Arbuste gymnosperme rampant à rameaux très nombreux, grêles et articulés, et à petites feuilles écailleuses, au fruit rouge écarlate. éphédra n. m. BOT Arbuste rameux (genre… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • ephedra — sinica. A shrub native to China and India. The stems and roots are used in traditional medicine as a diuretic and for asthma, bronchitis, and cough. It has also been promoted as a decongestant, a weight loss aid, and as a supplement to increase… …   English dictionary of cancer terms

  • ephedra — genus of low, branchy desert shrubs, 1914, from Modern Latin (1737) from Gk. ephedra, a name given by Pliny to the horsetail, lit. sitting upon, from fem. of ephedros, from epi on (see EPI (Cf. epi )) + hedra seat, base, chair, face of a… …   Etymology dictionary

  • Ephĕdra — (E. L.), Pflanzengattung aus der Familie der Gnetaceae, Diöcie, Monadelphie L., wenige Zoll hohe, blattlose, dem Equisetum einigermaßen ähnelnde Sträucher; Arten: E. monostachya, in Sibirien u. am Don, mit eßbaren, zur Bereitung eines Mußes… …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Ephĕdra — L. (Meerträubchen), Gattung der Gnetazeen, umfaßt aufrechte, bisweilen schlingende, reich verästelte Sträucher oder Halbsträucher von schachtelhalmähnlichem Ansehen, mit gegliederten Ästen und meist auf zweinervige Schuppen reduzierten,… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Ephedra — Ephĕdra L., Pflanzengattg. der Gnetazeen, reichverästelte Sträucher von schachtelhalmähnlichem Ansehen. Die Früchte einiger Arten (Meerträubchen) eßbar. Das Alkaloid von E. vulgāris Rich. (Ephedrīn) wird in der Augenheilkunde wie Atropin benutzt …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Ephedra — This article is about the use of species of Ephedra in medicine. For botanical information, see Ephedra (genus). For the prescription medication ephedrine, see ephedrine. Bottle of Ephedrine, an alkaloid found in Ephedra Ephedra refers to the… …   Wikipedia

  • Ephedra — Meerträubel Meerträubel (Ephedra distachya) Systematik Überabteilung: Samenpflanzen (Spermatophyta) …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Ephedra —   Ephedra Ephedra distachya …   Wikipedia Español

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