Moss, Iceland

Medical Herbs Catalogue


Moss, Iceland

otanical: Cetraria islandica (ACH.)
Family: N.O. Lichenes
Synonyms: Cetraria. Iceland Lichen.
Part Used: Lichen.
Habitat: A common plant in northern countries and in the mountainous part of warmer countries.

In spite of its name is not a Moss but a lichen. Found in Great Britain in barren stony ground, abundant in the Grampians, and in the Welsh hills, in Yorkshire, Norfolk, etc. It rarely fructifies but the thallus varies in size, amount of division and cusping as well as colour. It is sometimes much curled.

It contains about 70 per cent of lichen starch and becomes blue on the addition of iodine. It also contains a little sugar, fumaric acid, oxalic acid, about 3 per cent of cetrarin and 1 per cent of licheno-stearic acid.

Medicinal Action and Properties: Demulcent, tonic, and nutritive when deprived of its bitter principle. Excellent in chronic pulmonary troubles, catarrh, digestive disturbances, dysentery, advanced tuberculosis. Decoction, B.P. 1885, 1 to 4 OZ. Ground, it can be mixed with chocolate or cocoa.