The Mechoacan Plant.
Mechoacana. (A species of Convolvulus. Botanical name sites give C. mechoacan Arruda, Convolvulus mechoacana Vitman, C. mechoacana Sessé & Moc. and C. michoacana Sessé & Moc., but none are current. -Henriette)
A climbing plant, native of the West Indies, it is capable of running to a great height, when it can be supported: it will climb to the tops of all trees. The stalks are angulated, slender, green, and brittle; and when broken, they yield a vast quantity of an acrid, milky juice. The leaves stand singly; they are broad, and not very long, and of a beautiful shape, terminating in a point. The flowers are large, and of the shape of a bell: they are of a deep purple on the inside, and of a pale red without; and the seed-vessels are large, as are also the seeds. The root is whitish, and very thick.
The root is the part used: our druggists keep it dry. It is in slices, and is whitish and brittle. It is an excellent purge, but there requires a large dose to work tolerably; this has occasioned its being much less used than worse medicines, that operate more strongly, and can be taken with less disgust; but it is to be lamented, that so little use is made of it.