Candytuft, bitter

Medical Herbs Catalogue


Candytuft, bitter

Botanical Name: Iberis amara
Family: N.O. Cruciferae
Parts Used: Leaves, stem, root, seeds.
Habitat: Found in various parts of Europe and in English and Scotch cornfields, specially in limestone districts.

Description: This plant is an erect, rather stiff, very bitter annual, 6 to 12 inches high; flowers milky white, forming a terminal flat corymb; leaves oblong, lanceolate, acute, toothed; pod nearly orbicular, the long style projecting from notch at top; it flowers with the corns.

Medicinal Action and Uses: A tincture made from the ripe seeds is much used in homoeopathy, but the plant is more generally used by American herbalists. All parts of the plant are used, leaves, stem, root and seeds, more particularly the latter. It has always been used for gout, rheumatism and kindred ailments, and is now usually combined with other plants for the same diseases in their acute form, and as a simple to allay excited action of the heart, especially when it is enlarged. For asthma, bronchitis and dropsy it is considered very useful.

Dosage: 1 to 3 grains of the powdered seeds. In overdoses or too large ones it is said to produce giddiness, nausea and diarrhoea.