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Lycium Varieties

When scientific studies were first initiated to confirm the traditionally observed benefits of goji berries, they did not yield uniformly positive results. It could have been foreseen that these studies would arrive at inconsistent conclusions, as they were performed using the whole dried berries.

There can be tremendous variation in the quality of the dried fruits or juice, depending on how they were harvested, dehydrated and stored, and also depending on the quality of the fresh berries from which they were made. While
goji berries grow in many places, their quality can vary enormously.

There are many varieties of goji berries growing in different parts of the world. It has been claimed that there are 41 species in Tibet alone. Each has its own distinctive appearance, color, taste and each may differ from the others in medicinal power depending on the availability or lack thereof of trace minerals in the soil.

Lycium acutifolium

France: starch of root recommended as famine food for extending bread flour, after removal of bitter element.

Lycium Chinese

China: ripe fruit eaten fresh. Chemical composition (leafy shoots): Protein = 3.9%. Fat = 0.72%. Carbohydrate = 2.254%. Ash = 1.3%. Rich in Vitamin A. Vernacular names: Kuko, Matrimony Vine

Lycium barbarum common uses

Ache(Back) Lycium barbarum China
Aphrodisiac Lycium barbarum Elsewhere
Debility Lycium barbarum China
Diuretic Lycium barbarum Elsewhere
Fever Lycium barbarum China
Hyperglycemia* Lycium barbarum Elsewhere
Impotency Lycium barbarum China
Poison Lycium barbarum Elsewhere
Vertigo Lycium barbarum China
Aphrodisiac Lycium barbarum Iraq
Diuretic Lycium barbarum Iraq
Laxative Lycium barbarum Iraq
Poison Lycium barbarum Iraq
Spasm Lycium barbarum Iraq

Lycium chinensis

Lycium chinensis harvest in northern China

Lycium europaeum

The spiny jujube tree (lycium europaeum) is common in Samaria, where the story takes place. While its fruits are edible, they are not exceptionally tasty and it is very much the poor relative of the other native fruit trees mentioned in the parable. It can grow very large, easily providing shade for these small trees. Many scholars, such as biblical botanist Prof. Michael Zohary and Noga Hereuveni of Neot Kedumim, identify the biblical atad as the jujube tree.

Lycium halamifolium

Patented for use as an herbicide. US Patent number 20030191025 "Herbicidal compositions with substituted phenylsulfonylureas for controlling weeds in rice"

Lycium kraussii

Used to treat headache and rheumatism. A South African plant.

Lycium ruthenicum

A noxious weed in the Americas, a medicinal herb in China

Lycium sp

Desert thorn found in US deserts and Ireland.

A more extensive list can be found here.

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