Colchicum flowers consist of the fresh perianth of the meadow saffron, Colchicum autumnale, Linn. (N.O. Liliaceae). The flowers appear in the autumn. The six leaves of the perianth cohere to form a tube 7 or 8 centimetres long, which grows beyond the ovaries and above the surface of the soil, terminating in petaloid, six-partite limbs 3 or 4 centimetres long. This is characterised by its pale purple colour and bitter taste. If dried the flowers turn brown, and at the same time the bitterness decreases; they are therefore used in the fresh state.
Constituents.—Colchicum flowers contain, when fresh, apparently about 0.1 per cent. of colchicine, but on this point considerable discrepancy exists in the records.
Action and Uses.—The action of colchicum flowers resembles that of the seeds; a tincture of the flowers is prepared, and is used for similar purposes to other preparations of colchicum.
- Tinctura Colchici Florum, B.P.C.—TINCTURE OF COLCHICUM FLOWERS. 2 in 1.
- Used for the action of colchicum in gout. Dose.—1/2 to 2 mils (8 to 30 minims).
The British Pharmaceutical Codex, 1911, was published by direction of the Council of the Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain.