|P. frutescens var. crispa
forma discolor Makino
Perilla frutescens (L.) Britt. (syn. Perilla nankinensis (Lour.) Decne., etc.) is a cultivated plant of the mint family Lamiaceae. It is the species identification encompassing two distinct varieties  of traditional crop in East Asia:
- ) P. frutescens var. crispa the aromatic leafy herb called by its Japanese name shiso, which in turn is a loan word from Chinese: 紫蘇; pinyin: zi-su; Wade–Giles: tsu-su. The plant occurs in red (purple-leaved) or green-leaved forms. It also has a less fashionable translated name "beefsteak plant", but starting around the 1980s, with the rise of popularity of Japanese cuisine, it has become increasingly more chic for the mass media to use refer to it as shiso
- ) P. frutescens var. frutescens, the oilseed crop, source of perilla oil. This variety is used as an ingredient in Korean cuisine, both "wild sesame" (lit. tr. of deulggae), and "sesame leaves", which are green. It is known in Japan as egoma (where e- (荏) is equivalent to Chinese: 荏; pinyin: ren; Wade–Giles: jen and Korean:im).
Though now lumped into a single species of polytypic character, the two cultigens continue to be regarded as two distinct commodities in the Asian countries where they are most exploited. While they are morphologically similar, the modern strains are readily distinguishable. Accordingly the description separately or comparatively for the cultivars.
As a case in point, both varieties have foliage that outwardly look the same: broad ovate leaves which are serrate, arranged opposite. But the green shiso leaf (pictured left) is easily differentiated from "sesame leaf" of the same color (Korean: Hangul: 들깨; RR: deulggae; MR: kkaenip) by taste and fragrance. The shiso's distinctive flavor comes from its perillaldehyde component, present only in low concentration in the wild sesame foliage. Meanwhile, Korean investigators in recent years found that in the Korean perilla, the most active aroma compounds were perilla ketone, (Z)-3-hexenal (green), egoma ketone and isoegoma ketone.
The red (purple) forms of the shiso (forma purpurea and crispa) comes from its pigment, called "perilla anthocyanin " or shisonin anthocyanin. The color is present in both sides of the leaves, as well as the entire stalk, and flower buds (calyxes).
The red crinkly-leafed (called chirimenjiso in Japan) was the form of shiso first examined by Western botany, and Thunberg named it P. crispa (the name meaning "wavy or curly"). That Latin name was later retained when the shiso was reclassed as a variety.
There are also bi-colored cultivars (var. Crispa forma discolor Makino; カタメンジソ (katamenjiso?)) which are only red on the bottom (see pictured, top right). There is also green crinkly-leafed cultivars (called chirimenaojiso, froma viridi-crispa).
Sizes and seeds
The flawed assertion that "the seeds are difficult to distinguish even by scanning electron microscope" is taken out of context, since the original source  actually discusses the carbonized grain excavated lodged in crumbs of breadlike food excavated from Yayoi period or even Jomon Period strata.
Origins and distribution
It spread thorought China some time in remote antiquity. One of the early mentions on record occurs in Renown Physician's Extra Records (Chinese: "Ming Yi Bie Lu" 名医别录; pinyin: Ming Yi Bie Lu), ca. 500 AD., where it is listed as su(蘇), and some of its uses are described.
The perilla was introduced into Japan around the 8th to 9th century
The species was introduced into the Western horticulture as an ornamental, and in the United States became naturalized and established in a widespread area, and may be considered weedy or invasive.
Taxa and synonyma
An early example of dividing the two cultigens into different species is found in Matsumura's nomenclature book in 1884, where the synonym P. arguta Benth. is applied to shiso, and the synonym P. ocymoides L. was applied to the oilseed perilla.
The species name P. ocymoides or P. ocimoides has been used to denote the oilseed variety for a long time, especially by the Japanese, so it should not be considered a synonym for either cultigen interchangeably.
It is well-established that the two varieties are cross-fertile. It has been cautioned that the desired essential oil yield will be compromised if the seed for sowing becomes hybridized, and that "it is very difficult to distinguish genuine perilla seed from hybrid seed". The escaped types no longer retain the distinctive shiso fragance and are not fit for consumption.
English common names
The scarlet-leaved form of shiso was introduced into the West, around the 1850s, when the ornamental variety was usually referred to as P. Nankinensis. This red-leafed border plant eventually earned the English-language name "beefsteak plant". This was the English equivalent name was in standard usage over a period, authoritative Kenkyūsha's New Japanese-English Dictionary. Due to that legacy, the old-fashioned name remains in circulation today
||This article duplicates, in whole or part, the scope of other article(s) or section(s), specifically, Perilla. (August 2013)|
Its leaves and other parts are used as foods in China, Japan and Korea. Perilla oil is used in Korean cuisine, as well as industrially. Th plant has also been used in traditional Chinese medicine for more than two thousand years.
The red perilla has red leaves and used mostly in fish stews in China. Koreans make pickled "wild sesame" perilla leaves with red chili powder and soy sauce. Oil extracted from P. frutescens var. frutescens "is still used to cover cookies in rural areas of Korea". Sometimes, the seeds are ground and added to soup for seasoning in Korea.
The Japanese shiso leaves come in green, red, and also bicolored, and crinkly (chirimen-jiso) varieties, as noted. Parts of the plants eaten are the leaves, flower and buds from the flower stalks, fruits and seeds, and sprouts.
Japanese use green shiso leaves raw with sashimi. Dried leaves are also infused to make tea. The red shiso leaf is not normally consumed fresh, but needs to be e.g. cured in salt. The pigment in the leaves turn from purple to bright red color when steeped in umezu, and is used to color and flavor umeboshi.
Industrial use of oil
The oilseed contains drying oil elements and imported in bulk as a substitute for linseed oil into the United States from Japan, until the supply was interrupted by war.
The red-leaved shiso, in earlier literature referred to as Perilla nankinensis, became available to gardening enthusiasts in England ca. 1855. By 1862, the English were reporting overuse of this plant, and proposing Coleus vershaeffeltii  or Amaranthus melancholicus var. Ruber made available by J. G. Veitch  as an alternative.
The oilseed variety contains about 38-45% lipid. Expressed from these seeds, the perilla oil exhibits one of the highest proportions of omega-3 (α-linolenic acid (ALA) fatty acids of any seed oil, at 54-64% and only 14% linoleic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid. This unusual n6:n3 ratio gives this crop potential for an alternative to other seed oils.
- Blaschek, Hänsel & Keller 1998, vol.3, p.328
- Nitta, Lee & Ohnishi 2003, p.245-
- Hu 2005, p.651
- , evidence abounds in restaurant reviews and food sections. In the NY Times archives, Burros, Marian (October 21, 1983). "Restaurants". Retrieved March 29, 2012., review of Gyosai restaurant, seems to be the earliest instance among hundreds of usage that has amassed over the years.
- Hu 2005, p.652
- Vaughan & Geissler 2009
- Staples 1999,p.82
- Boning 2010, p. 149
- Tucker & DeBaggio 2009, p. 389
- Seo & Baek 2009, J. Agric. Food Chem., 2009, 57 (24), pp 11537–11542
- He, Kosuna & Haga 1997 p.151
- Heibonsha 1964 encyc.
- 農文協. "エゴマ(egoma)". 農業技術体系野菜編第１２巻. Retrieved 2012-03-30.
- Heibonsha 1964 Encycl. states egoma seeds are about 1.2 mm, slightly larger than shiso seeds. However egoma seeds being grown currently can be much larger.
- Oikawa & Toyama 2008, p. 5, egoma, sometimes classed P.frutescens var. Japonica, exhibited sizes of 1.4 mm < sieve caliber <2.0 mm for black seeds and 1.6 mm < sieve caliber <2.0 mm for white seeds.
- This is based on 650 seeds/gram reported by a purveyor Nicky's seeds; this is in ballpark with "The ABCs of Seed Importation into Canada". Canadian Food Inspection Agency. Retrieved 2012-03-31. also quotes 635 per gram, though it is made unclear which variety
- "Minor oil crops". Food and Agriculture Org of UN. Retrieved 2012-03-31.
- Imamura 1996, pp. 107–8
- 松谷 暁子. "植物遺残の識別と保存について". Ouroboros. 1(No.1). The University Museum, The University of Tokyo. Retrieved 2012-03-31. carries SEM photos of such perilla in paleo-bread (two photos at top right).
- Roecklein & Leung 1987, p. 349
- He, Kosuna & Haga 1997, p. 37
- He, Kosuna & Haga 1997, p. 3, citing:Tanaka, K. (1993), "Effects of Periilla", My Health (8): 152–153 (in Japanese).
- Nitta, Lee & Ohnishi 2003,p.245 "..taxonomically confused because of their morphological similarity."
- He, Kosuna & Haga 1997 p.1 "nomenclature of P. is confusing..", similar assessments are made by other works, and here as elwhere Zeevaart 1969 is cited for the comprehensive taxonomical study.
- Matsumura 1884, p.136
- Kays 2011, p.677-8
- e.g. occurs in Heibonsha 1964 Encyclopedia, though the genus name is misspelt
- Guenther 1949,p.687-
- anonymous (March 1855), "List of Select and New Florists' Flowers" (google), The Floricultural cabinet, and florists' magazine, (London: Simpkin,Marshall, & Co.) 23: 62 "Perilla Nankinesnsis, a new and curious plant with crimsn leaves.."; An earlier issue (Vol. 21, Oct. 1853) , p.240, describe it being grown among the "New Annuals in the Horticultural Society's Garden"
- Tucker & DeBaggio 2009, p. 389, "name beefsteak plant.. from the bloody purple-red color.."
- Kenkyusha's (1954 edition) was verified.
- He, Kosuna & Haga 1997, p.1 after Wilson et al., 1977
- He, Kosuna & Haga 1997, p.3
- He, Kosuna & Haga 1997, p.1 after Duke, 1988
- Foster & Yue 1992,p.306-8
- Gay, Suzanne (2009). The Lamp-Oil Merchants of Iwashimizu Shrine: Transregional Commerce in Medieval Japan. Monumenta Nipponica, 64:1, 1–51. p. 14
- Brenner 1993, etc.
- Dombrain, H. H. (1862), Floral Magazine (google) 2, London: Lovell Reeve, Pl. 96
- Dombrain, H. H. (1862), "New or rare plants" (google), The Gardener's Monthly and Horticultural Adviser (London: Lovell Reeve) 4: 181
- Maloy, Bridget (1867), "The Horticultural Department:The Culture of Flowers" (google), The Cultivator & Country Gentleman (Alban, NY: Luther Tucker & Son) 29: 222, "Perilla nankinesnsis was one of the first of the many ormanental foliaged plants brought into the gardens and greenhouses of this country within few years. "
- Foster & Yue 1992,p.306-8 gives mid-19th century as introductory period into the US.
- Hyo-Sun Shin, "Ch. 9 Lipid Composition," in He, Kosuna & Haga 1997, p.93-, citing Sonntag 1979, Vaugham, 1970.
- Asif, M (2011), "Health effects of omega-3,6,9 fatty acids: Perilla frutescens is a good example of plant oils", Oriental pharmacy and experimental medicine 11 (1): 51–59, doi:10.1007/s13596-011-0002-x, PMC 3167467, PMID 21909287
- Hyo-Sun Shin, in He, Kosuna & Haga 1997, p.93-, citing Tsuyuki et al., 1978
- Esaki, Osamu(江崎治) (2006), "生活習慣病予防のための食事・運動療法の作用機序に関する研究", 日本栄養 食糧学会誌 (Proceedings of the JSNFS) 59 (5): 326 gives 58%
- Hiroi 2009, p. 35,[clarification needed] gives 62.3% red, 65.4% green shiso
- (herbs and food plant handbooks)
- Boning, Charles R. (2010), Florida's Best Herbs and Spices (preview), London: Pineapple Press Inc, pp. 148–, ISBN 9781561644537
- Roecklein, John C.; Leung, PingSun (1987), A Profile of Economic Plants (preview), Transaction Publishers, p. 349, ISBN 9780887381676
- Staples, George W.; Kristiansen, Michael S. (1999), Ethnic culinary herbs: A guide to identification and cultivation in Hawaii, Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, pp. 82–, ISBN 9780824820947
- Tucker, Arthur O.; DeBaggio, Thomas (2009), The Encyclopedia of Herbs: a comprehensive reference to herbs of flavor and (preview), Timber Press, p. 389, ISBN 9780881929942
- Vaughan, John Griffith; Geissler, Catherine (2009), The new Oxford book of food plants, Oxford: Oxford University Press, p. 152, ISBN 9780199549467
- (monogram on species)
- Anderson, Edgar (1970), "The Tangled Career of Perilla Frutescens" (snippet), Oecology issue (Io): 31
- Nitta, Miyuki; Lee, Ju Kyong; Ohnishi, Ohmi (2003), "Asian Perilla Crops and Their Weedy Forms: Their Cultivation, Utilization and Genetic Relationships", Economic Botany (jstordoi:10.1663/0013-0001(2003)057[0245:APCATW]2.0.CO;2, JSTOR 4256682) (New York Botanical Garden Press) 57 (2): 245–253,
- Yu, He-Ci; Kosuna, Kenichi; Haga, Megumi (1997), Perilla: the genus Perilla (preview), CRC Press, ISBN 9789057021718
- Zeevaart, Jan A. D. (1969), "Perilla spp", in L. T., The Induction of Flowering
- (nomenclature, taxonomy)
- Matsumura, Jinzō (1884), Nippon Shokubutsumei, or nomenclature of Japanese plants in Latin, Japanese and Chinese(日本植物名彙) (google), Tokyo: Z.P. Maruya, p. 136
- Kays, Stanley J. (2011), Cultivated vegetables of the world: a multilingual onomasticon (preview), Wageningen Academic Pub., pp. 180–1, 677–8, ISBN 9789086861644
- Blaschek, Wolfgang; Hänsel, Rudolf; Keller, Konstantin (1998), Hagers Handbuch der Pharmazeutischen Praxis (preview), 3 (L-Z), Gabler Wissenschaftsverlage, pp. 328–, ISBN 9783540616191
- Guenther, Ernest (1949), The Essential Oils (snippet), Cambridge and New York: D. Van Nostrand Co., pp. 687–
- Seo, Won Ho; Baek, Hyung Hee (2009), "Characteristic Aroma-Active Compounds of Korean Perilla (Perilla frutescens Britton) Leaf", Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry (browsedoi:10.1021/jf902669d), 57 (24) (24): 11537–11542,
- Channell, BJ; Garst, JE; Linnabary, RD; Channell, RB (5 August 1977), "Perilla ketone: a potent lung toxin from the mint plant, Perilla frutescens Britton", Science 197 (4303): 573–574, Bibcode:1977Sci...197..573W, doi:10.1126/science.877573, PMID 877573
- (Chinese perspective)
- Foster, Steven; Yue, Chongxi (1992), Herbal emissaries: bringing Chinese herbs to the West : a guide to gardening (preview), Inner Traditions / Bear & Co., pp. 306–8, ISBN 9780892813490
- Hu, Shiu-ying (2005), Food plants of China (preview) 1, Chinese University Press, ISBN 9789629962296
- Gale, James Scarth (1897), A Korean-English dictionary (google), Kelly & Walsh, pp. 611, 661
- Heibonsha (1964), 世界百科事典(Sekai hyakka jiten) (world encyclopedia, in Japanese).
- Oikawa, Kazushi; Toyama, Ryo (2008), "Analysis of Nutrition and the Functionality Elements in Perilla Seeds", 岩手県工業センター研究報告 15 pdf (in Japanese except abstract)
- Hiroi, Masaru (広井勝) (2010), "エゴマの成分と利用", 特産種苗 5[clarification needed] [tokusanshubyo.sakura.ne.jp/jouhoushi05/j05-13.pdf pdf] (in Japanese except abstract)
- Imamura, Keiji (1996), Prehistoric Japan - New Perspectives on Insular East Asia (preview), Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, pp. 107–8, ISBN 9780824818524
- Habu, Junko (2004), Ancient Jomon of Japan (preview), Cambridge and New York: Cambridge Press, p. 59, ISBN 9780521776707