Wood Betony

eibren(z6PA)March 22, 2014

This is an interesting herb with many historical associations and uses, including the ability to be steeped as a tealike beverage.

As one of its historical uses was as a vermifuge, however, its use as a tea should be limited, and it should not be used at all when expecting.

I'm wondering if anyone else has grown this? I planted one plant in a rather wild part of my garden several years ago, and think I will go on a hunt for it when it gets warmer to see if it has survived.

An interesting botanical characteristic is its practice of parasitizing the roots of other plants to increase its access to soil moisture and nutrients.

Some still claim it is mildly useful in cases of anxiety, colds and sinus afflictions, etc.

Here is a link that might be useful: USDA--Forest Service

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two plants are commonly called 'wood betony' leading to some confusion, what is the latin name of the plant you are referring to?

both of the herbs with this common name have an affinity for the head, often used for headaches, anxiety, etc.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 10:26AM
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It's in the link: Wood Betony (Pedicularis canadensis L.).

"Pedicularis (Orobanchaceae, formerly Scrophulariaceae: Rhinanthoideae) are hemiparastic plants. Pedicularis canadensis ... whose common names are lousewort or wood betony, is an obligate root parasite on a wide range of host species, but it retains its photosynthetic ability. Reproduction and host foraging are accomplished both sexually (seeds) and asexually (rhizomes). "

Here is a link that might be useful: Illinois State

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 10:11PM
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ooo, Pedicularis is one of my favorite herbs! it's a wild snapdragon family member and looks like it too. have harvested it many times in the high rockies where it likes to grow and blooms in summer, july and august. (although there are lowland versions of it too) it possesses lovely nervine and sedative properties...highly prized by the working herbalist. it can be hard to come by in commerce, always sells out quickly. please harvest ethically... 10% only from large stands.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 11:56AM
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