Equisetum telmateia, Equisetum maximum, Giant horsetail,
Hebrew: שבטבט גדול, Arabic: جنس الكُنباث

Scientific name:  Equisetum telmateia Ehrh.
Synonym name:  Equisetum maximum auct. non Lam.
Common name:  Giant horsetail
Hebrew name:  שבטבט גדול
Arabic/الاسم العربي:  جنس الكُنباث
Español:  Equisetum telmateia
Family:  Equisetaceae, שבטבטיים

Wildflowers, Israel, Send flowers OnLine

Life form:  Hemicryptophyte
Stems:  50-85 cm high; stems with hollow center and series of small carinal (under the ridges) and larger vallecular canals
Leaves:  Whorled, scale, acicular (needle-shaped), entire margins
Flowers:  Reproduction by spores
Fruits / pods:  Cones terminal on green stems
Flowering Period:   April, May, June, July
Habitat:  Humid habitats
Distribution:  Mediterranean Woodlands and Shrublands
Chorotype:  Euro-Siberian - Med - Irano-Turanian
Summer shedding:  Perenating

Equisetum telmateia, Equisetum maximum, Giant horsetail, שבטבט  גדול


Derivation of the botanical name:
Equisetum, Latin, equus, "horse", and seta, "bristle, animal hair"; horsetail.
telmateia, telmat, bog, marsh, swamp; marshland, morass; referring to wet meadows or pools.
maximum, largest.
  • The standard author abbreviation Ehrh. is used to indicate Jakob Friedrich Ehrhart (1742 – 1795), a German botanist, a pupil of Carolus Linnaeus at Uppsala University.
  • The standard author abbreviation Lam. is used to indicate Jean-Baptiste Lamarck (1744 – 1829), a French botanist.
In the carboniferous period (359.2 - 299 million years ago), the earth was covered with immense forests of gigantic Equisetum which today make up to a large extent our coal measures.
Equisetum telmateia develop extensive underground rhizome systems and can extend more than 4 m deep into wet clay soil. It occupies sites with continually flowing groundwater.
The herb's high silica makes it abrasive, and was used from the Middle Ages until the 18th century for scouring pots and pans, especially pewter.
John Gerard (1545 – 1611/12), Gerard's Herbal: "Dioscorides says that Horse-taile, being stamped and laid to, does perfectly cure wounds, yea though the sinews be cut in sunder, as Galen adds. It is of so great and so singular a vertue in healing of wounds, as that it is thought, and reported for truth, to cure the wounds of the bladder and other bowels, and helps ruptures and bursting".
Charles Frederick Millspaugh (1854-1923), an American botanist, wrote: "It is gathered into bundles by many housewives and used to brighten tins, floors and woodeneware, and in the art of polishing woods and metals.".

Equisetum telmateia, Equisetum maximum, Giant horsetail, שבטבט  גדול
Location: 'Horsetail Reserve', near HaGoshrim