Flora

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This article lists plants that are unique to Hökaland.


Arthorn

Arthorn is a green leaf herb with large thorns which produce an rash-inducing substance if exposed to bare skin. It is also a herb commonly used for it's piquant taste that can be picked from it's flowers but the plant blooms irregularly and though there are arthorn bushes in many places, the herb is rather expensive. The plant is more commonly thought of as annoying by people because of it's namesake thorns, though not poisonous or dangerous.

Arthorn can be used as an ingredient in itching powder and in very large quantities can be used as a nerve poison if introuduced to the bloodstream.

Destroyer of Hope

Amanita bisporigera is a deadly toxic species of fungus.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amanita_bisporigera


Icklerose

Literally referred to as a "small rose", it is a small white flower that blooms in the northern half of Midrealms during the early spring for about a month. They are considered very cute and looks a bit like roses, though its petals are more round. The icklerose's scent is not very powerful, but if its petals are dried and burned, they can create a soothing aroma that helps with concentration. This aroma is also said to soothe the mind and improve natural healing of flesh wounds and scratches.

Brownwood

Exceptionally hard wood. (lol)

Purple Clovers

Clovers that grow in the Northrealms, far up. These can be used as spices in food, but are slightly poisonus, so not in too great amounts. It can also be used together with some other herbs to create "Pixieblood", which is a cure-all remedy for everything from the common cold to pneumonia and some alchemical concoctions.

Purple clovers are notoriously hard to cultivate and are most commonly simply picked wild.


Richtree

Richtree or 'rich' is a semi-rare tree that contains a sap that is a Non-Newtonian fluid, making it particularly resistant to axe cuts and saws. The tree and sap also have low-level magical properties. When processed, layers of the stem retains many of these qualities and can be used for a variety of crafts. Dried, the material can also be used as a component in alchemy, especially as it has great attributes to assist other chemical processes and its sap is somewhat flame retardent. It is called richtree because selling these trees can make you rich.

Generally, the material is used in the layers of the tree, between 2-3mm thick, up to 2m wide and 2-8m tall sheets. Very tall sheets generally has holes from branches, however.


Richtree Compounds

The main two compounds you get from a richtree are the sheets of wood and its sap but also the roots and leaves can be valuable and useful. The sheets of wood are generally used as force impact reduction and often used as padding inside armour to assist against arrows and spears, using the tree's Non-Newtonian properties, or just as a very durable and hard material. The following things can be made from richtree:

  • Hard richtree wood sheets
  • Force-reducing richtree wood sheets
  • Richtree sap
  • Richtree seeds
  • Richtree powders

Hard richtree

After being prepared, each sheet is rigid and hard, similar in strength to a thin iron plate but much thicker and lighter. It is also more brittle than iron, and though hard will shatter if enough force is applied. This material is also somewhat flammable, similar to paper, and quite hydrophobic. As such, its usefullness is quite specific.

The main use for hard richtree is for highly valued scouts in the military, which use these to make lightweight and silent armor. It is also used for ornaments and household objects of high value and require some use to the richtree to work with.

If heated up with steam, the wood becomes quite malleable and can be bent into particular shapes that it retains when it dries and cools. A combination of woodcrafting and leathercrafting is used to make most objects. Since it moves a little bit as it dries, it's generally not ideal for storing liquids other than as some sort of bowl. If vinager is applied, the structure will firm up and not be workeable even if steamed.

The relative flammability is of course always a danger.

Force-reducing richtree

In order to use the sheets as force-reducing plates, they need to be submerged in its own processed sap. Hence most richtree ovens are found near the sea, even if the trees often are found hundreds of miles away. The sheet in question need to be submerged into a heated (but not boiling) solution of salt water and sap that has been previously boiled for about a day. This makes the sheets stays flexible as somewhat rigid leather, but stiffents entirely when force is introduced.

There is a lot more hard richtree around than there is force-reducing because of the chemical process of the sap. There isn't enough to make the entire tree's wooden layers force-reducing.

The natural use of the sheets of force reducing sheets is of course primarily for military purposes. It requires good thinking in the design though as the entire sheet stiffens to about the solidity of similarly thick steel if struck. Though this could save the wearer's life when an arrow strikes, it can also impair her movement, opening up another flank for someone to strike.

In practical terms, any bludgeoning, slashing or piercing force is stopped similarly to 2-3 mm thick steel, while weighing a lot less. Especially cutting and piercing forces are diverted across the area it hits. Slowly applied piercing force will easily slide through, however.

The material will have to be re-submerged into sap every 5 years or so to retain its abilities but will still slowly become entirely rigid and hard (but brittle) over time. The total lifetime before the material becomes unuseable is about 20-30 years.

Richtree Sap

The sap is extracted through steaming the trunk and branches. It is a very dark brown colour and when steamed out of the tree it's almost black. The sap is then solved in boiling salt water, about 3 parts water and 1 part sap but half the water boils away in the process.

The sap has some flame retarding capabilities which it is used for on certain items or buildings, but it is primarily used to make force-reducing richtree.

Richtree seeds

The seeds are rare because of the bloom cycle of the trees and valuable both to plant new trees but also as an alchemical compound and a magical reagent.

This compound is partly magical, and some of the effects come from the magical essence.

Red richtree powder

Rare and expensive, the red powder is made from the flowers of the richtree, driend and ground up. They smell a little bit like rotting flesh, so are usually kept with tight lids. It's used as a powerful alchemical compound and both the powder and leaves are used for magical reagents.

This compound is partly magical, and some of the effects come from the magical essence.

Green richtree powder

Richtree leaves are generally picked before processing and dried, then ground up to make green richtree powder. It is used as an alchemical compound and sometimes as a reagent for magic. It is also frequently used as a herbal remedy green tea among the very rich.

This compound is partly magical, and some of the effects come from the magical essence.

Black richtree powder

The bark of a richtree is thinner than the layers of wood and quite dark brown. This is taken off before steaming the rest of the tree and dried for a few weeks before being roughly ground up and roasted. The result is a fine black powder with a very peculiar smell that can be used in food or drinks, primarily alcohol.

This compound is partly magical, and some of the effects come from the magical essence.

Brown richtree powder

The roots of a richtree is usually dried out over a year or more a similar process happens with the roots, which does not have as much of the sap as the rest of the tree. It is also used as an alchemical compound and as a reagent for magic.

It has a somewhat flammable chemical effect but can also enhance other alchemical effects to do with heat, power, friction, etc. Though somewhat flammable, it is not in itself explosive.

This compound is partly magical, and some of the effects come from the magical essence.

Yellow richtree powder

Roots have been known to be steamed as well as the trunks and branches for the little sap that is in them. This creates dried out roots which are ground up to make a dark almost brown powder called yellow richtree powder. It is also used as an alchemical compound and as a reagent for magic. However, it's generally not as potent as brown richtree powder and used for slightly different things.

This compound is partly magical, and some of the effects come from the magical essence.


Plant life

The richtree primarily grows close to swamps and mires and relatively quickly. Each year adds a 1-3mm thich layer of the tree and between 30-60cm in height (less after the first few years). Resistant to most cuts and forces and though not outright poisonous definitely inedible to most lifeforms, and mainly left alone. Their bloom cycle is individual for each plant and some "procreation" is simply roots growing out a new tree. The average plant will bloom once every 4.5 years and the entire plant blooms at the same time (so different trees of the same plant even in a wide area will bloom at the same time). This is not a certain sign that the trees are part of the same plant, however, since some synchronisation seems to happen. I bloom time, people stay away from the trees if they can since the flowers smell of putrid flesh that attracts flies.

Richtrees found in other places than swamps generally never grow larger than large bushes or small trees (up to 2m) and does not have the same thickness or force resistance as the ones found in mires, but they facilitate for the species as a whole to procreate and multiply. The flowers of these trees have an odour that is undetectable to humans but attractive to bees and similar species. It's more or less useless as any type of reagent and without taste as tea.

The small trees found outside of mires are generally not worth the hassle to deal with. Though not as hard as richtrees in swamps, it's still a wiry and resistant plant and is usually only removed if the land needs to be cleared for other reasons. The wood is of similar quality to burn as regular wood, but almost useless for anything else.


Processing

Because of it's toughness, it's almost impossible to cut down. Branches can be cut down with special purpose cutters, but trees generally are dragged out of the bog with ropes and pulleys. This is also heavy work, but the soft marshlands at least makes it possible. Bark, roots and leaves are generally saved for different types of reagents.

Mire trees have their branches and roots cut off and leaves gathered up. All stems and branches are cut with special knives and its bark taken off to be dried. The remaining trunk and branches are then immediately steamed in a specialised oven (often a bath is placed on top to use the excess heat) for a couple of days, which releases the sap and partly coagulates it, making it easy to pick up as near-solid large droplets. It is a liquid of very low viscousity and retains concentrated non-neutonian traits.

The trunk will have changed dramatically after losing its sap, separating each layer and if there are no branches, each round layer can be extracted from the other with gentle force. The branches are the same, but many segments will be unuseable because of their shape and are simply used for fuel.

In the cases where the richtrees are too tall for the ovens, special doors are added on the front, steaming just part of the tree to start with. When the trunk is still warm but without sap, the workers quickly cut each layer off just inside the point where the steaming took place and use them as normal while putting the rest of the trunk back in the oven to steam the other part as well.

The sap is soluable in boling salt water, and often used to make sheets of richwood become force-reducing.

Richtree Ovens

Richtree ovens are mostly found near the ocean because of the salt water requirements and usually made in clay and designed with two chambers: One for the fuel and one for the trunks and branches. By necessity they are usually at least 4-5 meters long, upheld by arches in the middle to a height of about a half to one full metre. The bottom and arches are often empty and act as chimneys, sending the heat on detours before exiting at the top of the structure. Sometimes these are lined with metal to increase the lifetime of the oven itself and make repairs easier.

On top of the oven, the makers often build additional structures that benefit from the excess heat such as a water heaters, or in the case of ship building nearby; additional chambers on top for steaming other types of wood to be more bendable.

Ovens are not overly common since they are a bit complicated to build.

Siliphum

Almost the same as Siliphum from our world

Siliphum, also known as werlaser or lasar, is a plant similar in appearance to giant fennel, and its resin (lasar or lasarpicium) has many medical uses. It is said to treat cough, sore throat, fever, indigestion, aches and pains, warts, and all kinds of maladies. It is also the one truly reliable abortifacient found in the Realms. In slightly larger doses it induces menstruation-like effects and literally flushes out any recently impregnated womb. In smaller doses it acts as a fairly effective contraceptive.

Because of all its uses, as well as issues cultivating siliphum, buying the herb or lasarpicium is very expensive. The resin usually sells for its weight in either silver or gold. Buying the herb and processing it one self is slightly cheaper, but the cost per pound is of course a lot higher.



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