A non-aromatic perennial with a woody rootstock and
reddish, pith rich stems. The large, smooth leaves are tapering in
outline. Between April and July small greenish yellow flowers, crowded
into a spike, appear. Fruit is a fleshy berry, black in colour, containing
Grows on dry rocky mountainsides, by roadsides and in forest
clearings from 3,000 ft to 5,600 ft. It is commonly encountered on the
higher slopes of the Troodos mountains.
Uses and Properties
Ink produced from the fruits and flowers of this plant
has been used for centuries, hence the local name "melanies" meaning
inky. The leaves, fruits and roots have purgative properties.