Motherwort

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Disclaimer: This data is meant for informational purposes only and is not meant to prescribe or treat specific problems. As with any herb or medication, please consult your Doctor of Naturopath or your Medical Doctor before trying anything new.

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"Leonurus cardiaca"

Motherwort is an herb that I feel does not get enough credit! The tops of the plant is used and affects the nerves, heart, & uterus when used properly.

Motherwort has Nervine, Tonic, Antispasmodic, mild laxative, and Emmenagogue (promotes menstrual flow) properties.

Motherwort is usually prepared as tinctures, infusions, fluid extracts, & powdered capsules.

If you have scanty or suppressed menstruation, motherwort tea when taken warm is an excellent remedy. A hot fomentation made from Motherwort Tea and laid over the stomach is a popular remedy for painful menstrual cramps. Motherwort is useful for nervous conditions. It also is a diuretic so will help with urine retention.

Perhaps some of you have seen Motherwort/Hawthorn capsule combinations. This is because Motherwort is a good heart tonic herb that works best combined with Hawthorn for mild palpitations, & nervousness in the form of a tincture or fluid extract.

I do caution you that heart problems (sometimes even the mildest) can be very serious and should not be taken lightly. As always, this data is for informational purposes only and is not meant to presecribe, treat, or diagnos any symptoms. Always check with your Doctor of Naturopath or M.D. (preferably one familiar with herbs) before trying to treat yourself.

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Motherwort is a perennial herb which can grow quite tall, up to 4 to 5 feet. It's stem is square and hollow, with many branches coming off of it. Leaves grow opposite each other at right angles to the pair just above and just below it. The leaves have toothed edges and have veins on the underside that are very noticeable.

Motherwort grows in waste lands, waysides, & grasslands. This plant flowers from the end of May up until September, and blooms grow in whorls of in the mid and upper leaf joints. The color of the flowers is normally a pale pink, very rarely white.

The seeds are readily available from herb catalog sources. The seedlings are sometimes found in large nurseries.

Motherwort is a very pretty plant to grow, and I am always amazed at the way the flowers bloom and grow. Upon close examination the flowers are actually very beautiful and complex.

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Motherwort Herbal Tonic Syrup

4 oz. of fresh Motherwort Tops or 2 oz. of dried
1 quart of water
1 to 2 ounces of honey

Put herb in water and boil on LOW until you have 1 pint of liquid. Strain off and add the honey. (You can also substitute 1/4 glycerine and 3/4 honey). Bottle and store in the refrigerator.

Old lore states that Motherwort syrup was used to stop inward termors, faint feelings, and as a general tonic.

Culpepper wrote "There is no better herb to drive melancholy vapours from the heart, to strengthen it and make the mind cheerful, blithe and merry." He went on to mention that it could be kept in the form of syrup or a conserve. Culpepper also said that it cleanses the chest of cold phlegm and kills worms in the belly.

There is no actual mention as to the dosage of one taking this herbal tonic syrup, and depending on what you are using it for would determine how often you would take it.

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Marcia Wilson
Journeywoman Herbalist
The Allways Natural Herb Farm
10/21/98

Toiletries - Motherwort

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© 1998- Linda Coffin

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