(Paronychia spp) The name of the genus, Paronychia, is from Greek words meaning 'close to the nail', alluding to the original use of the plant to treat whitlows. That is why the genus is known generally as Whitlow-wort, or sometimes, particularly for P jamesii, Nailwort.

P argentea is a plant from the Middle East and North Africa. Palestinian children would eat the tips of the young stems, and because they are red at the joints, they give the name Dove's Foot, the dove who always has henna on her feet. For when Noah sent a raven and a dove from the Ark, the raven never came back, but the dove did, and Noah blessed her (Crowfoot & Baldensperger).

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