Plantain, Hoary

Medical Herbs Catalogue


Plantain, Hoary

Botanical Name: Plantago media (LINN.)
Family: N.O. Plantaginaceae
Part Used: Seeds.

The Hoary Plantain is a common meadow species. The broadly-elliptical leaves, on short flat stalks, spread horizontally from the crown of the root and lie so close to the ground as to destroy all vegetation beneath and to leave the impression of their ribs on the ground. The flowers are in a close, cylindrical spike, shorter than in Plantago major, but growing on a longer stalk, which is downy. They are very fragrant, and are conspicuous by their light purple anthers, the filaments being long and pink or purplish.

Medicinal Action and Uses: This species is a reputed cure for blight on fruit-trees. A few green leaves from the plant, if rubbed on the part of the tree affected, it has been recently discovered, will effect an instantaneous cure, and the wounds on the stem afterwards heal with smooth, healthy coverings. The plant is often found growing underneath the trees in orchards.

The medicinal virtues of this species were considered to be much the same as the preceding ones, the seeds, boiled in milk, being laxative and demulcent.