The Costus Plant.
AN Indian plant, which bears two kinds of stalks, one for the leaves, and the other for the flowers and seeds; these both rise from the same root, and often near one another.
The leaf-stalks are four feet high, thick, hollow, round, upright, and of a reddish colour.
The leaves are like those of the reed kind, long, narrow, and pointed at the edges, and they are of a bluish green colour. The stalks which bear the flowers, are eight inches high, tender, soft, round, and as it were scaly. The flowers are small and reddish, and they stand in a kind of spikes, intermixed with a great quantity of scaly leaves.
The root is the only part used; it is kept by our druggists; it is oblong and irregularly shaped. It is a very good and safe diuretic, it always operates that way, sometimes also by sweat and it opens obstructions of the viscera. But unless it be new and firm, it has no virtue.