Germander, Water

Medical Herbs Catalogue


Germander, Water

Botanical Name: Teucrium scordium (LINN.)
Family: N.O. Labiatae
Part Used: Herb.

The Water Germander (Teucrium Scordium) is a creeping plant growing in marshy places in various parts of Europe, but very rare in Great Britain except in the Isle of Ely. It was formerly cultivated in gardens for medicinal uses.

Description: The square, hairy stalks, are of a dirty green colour and very weak. The leaves are short, broad, woolly and soft, and indented at the edges. The flowers are small, of a purplish-rose colour, in whorls, in the axils of the leaves. It flowers in July and August.

The whole plant is bitter and slightly aromatic.

The fresh leaves, when rubbed, have a penetrating odour, like Garlic, and it is said that when cows eat it through hunger, it gives the flavour of Garlic to their milk.

Medicinal Action and Uses: It was once esteemed as an antidote for poisons and as an antiseptie and anthelmintic, but is now searcely used, though its tonic and aromatic bitter qualities and diaphoretic action make a decoction of it an excellent remedy in all inflammatory diseases, and it may be used with advantage in weak, relaxed constitutions.

The tincture in small doses is considered a good remedy for exhilarating and rousing torpid faculties.

For intermittent fever and scrofulous complaints the infusion of 1 OZ. of the dried herb to 1 pint of boiling water, taken in wineglassful doses, is recommended.

The dried leaves have been employed as a vermifuge, and decoction is said to be a good fomentation in gangrenous cases.

Preparation: Fluid extract, 1/2 to 1 drachm.