Other Names in English: Salep
Persian Name: ثَعلَب/ Salab
German Name: Geflecktes Knabenkraut, Maennliche Orchis, Männliches Knabenkraut i.w.S., Stattliches Knabenkraut
French Name: Orchis tacheté
The Orchis is a perennial plant that reaches fifty centimeters in height and has many species. It has only one relatively thick stem, the upper part of which turns red, and its cross section is circular. The leaves are elongated, oval, and soft. They have long veins. They grow without petioles and are similar to the leaves of the lily plant. There are several red and dark spots on the surface of the leaves of this plant. These leaves grow from the bottom of the plant near the ground.
The flowers grow in clusters at the top of the stem. These flowers are purple-pink and have tongues, and there is a long and narrow appendage behind them. These flowers have tongue-shaped petals, relatively large, and several oval and small petals. The tongue-shaped petals have two relatively deep grooves on which some bright pink dots can be seen.
This plant has two oval and pale brown underground bulbs, which are white and slightly transparent inside. These bulbs are placed next to each other, one is full and the other is hollow. Its taste is sweet, sticky and slightly spicy. The underground bulb of some Orchis species has four to six branches and resembles a very small hand.
The preliminary phytochemical screening showed that the crude extract of Orchis mascula contained alkaloids, saponins, tannins, phenolics, terpenes, sterols and flavonoids(9). The tuber of Orchis mascula contained glucoside, bitter substance, saponins 4%, starch 2.7- 21.92%, mucilage 48%, moisture 10.62%, sugar 1%, nitrogenous compounds 5 %, albumen, a trace of volatile oil and ash 2% containing chiefly phosphates and chlorides of potassium and lime.
Temperament: Hot and moist
Harm: It is harmful for the aperture of stomach and for hot temperaments, eating too much of Orchis causes weakness of the gastrointestinal tract and nervous system.
If a woman pound it with saffron and some musk and puts it in the uterus as a suppository and sleeps with her husband, if there is no specific physiological defect, she will most likely get pregnant the first time.