Sandspurry, Common

Medical Herbs Catalogue


Sandspurry, Common

Botanical Name: Arenaria rubra (LINN.)
Family: N.O. Caryophyllaceae

Synonyms: Spergularia rubra. Sabline rouge. Tissa rubra. Birda rubra.
Part Used: Herb.
Habitat: Europe, Russia, Asia, North America, Australia.

Common in Britain in sandy, gravelly heaths and waste places near the sea. Flowers all the summer. There are two marked varieties: the one growing inland has small flowers, thin leaves, short capsules, seeds rarely bordered. The other, often called Spergularia Marina, is larger in every respect and has fleshy leaves. For medicinal purposes the one most used is found in Malta, Sicily and Algiers, growing in dry sandy soil from Quebec to Virginia.

Description: An annual or biennial plant, glabrous or with a short viscid down in the upper parts; numerous stems branching from the base forming prostrate tufts 3 to 6 inches long; leaves narrow, linear; very short conspicuous scarious stipules at the base. Flowers usually pink, sometimes white, but variable size; short pedicels in forked cymes, usually leafy at base. Petals shorter, rarely longer than the sepals. Seeds more or less flattened.

Medicinal Action and Uses: Long used in bladder diseases. It contains a resinous, aromatic substance which presumably is its active principle. Very valuable for calculus diseases and acute and chronic cystitis.

Dosages: Aqueous extract up to 30 grains, or of the fluid extract, 1 fluid drachm three or four times a day. Infusion, 1 OZ. to 1 pint. Its taste is saline and slightly aromatic.