Chickweed

Stellaria Media, Chickweed, Chickenwort, Craches, Maruns, Winterweed, Starweed, Starwort, Mischievous Jack

 

It is widespread in the European part, in the Caucasus, the Far East, and in Western and Eastern Siberia. It grows near housing, in vegetable gardens, in weedy places, and sometimes on damp forest roads and clearings.

 

It is a malicious weed of garden crops. In the old days, the weather was predicted by the plant, and the corolla of the flower played the role of a barometer.

 

If it did not rise and did not open before 9 o’clock in the morning, they waited for rain. The plant is moist to the touch in dry weather, which is why it is called a woodlouse.

 

It does not live long, 3-4 weeks, then it dries up, but the ripened seeds give new sprouts, in addition, twigs, in contact with the soil, take root and start new shoots.

 

It is an annual herbaceous plant of the clove family with a length of 10-40 cm. The stem is recumbent or straightening, strongly branched, and brittle. The leaves are small, opposite, ovate, lower petiolate, and upper sessile.

 

Blooms from May to September. The flowers are small, white, two-part, and have the appearance of an asterisk, on long peduncles, located in the axils of the upper leaves.

 

The fruit is a multi-seeded oblong ovoid capsule, cracking into six lobules in the upper half. The seeds are rough. Ripen in August – September. The medicinal raw material is the aboveground part of the plant.

 

Collect it during flowering. Dried at a temperature not higher than 40 °C. Stored in bags, glass, or wooden containers for 1-2 years. It is better to use a fresh plant or its juice.

 

The herb contains triterpene saponins, vitamins C and K, flavonoids and higher aliphatic alcohols. Preparations of asterisks have anti-inflammatory, hypotensive, diuretic, soothing effects, soften and dissolve tumors, stop bleeding and promote healing of purulent wounds.

 

Use an internal remedy in the treatment of chronic liver diseases, gallstones and urolithiasis, hypertension, coronary heart disease and tumors of various localization, inflammatory diseases of the bronchi and lungs, hemorrhoids, and goiter, externally for baths with swelling of the legs, in the form of lotions with exudative diathesis.

 

Additional Information: Chickweed has a strange and fascinating history, which has been influenced a lot by folklore and myth. In ancient Europe, Chickweed was used to promote fidelity and also to cause attraction between lovers and maintain relationships.

 

The 17th-century herbalist Culpeper had a theory that Chickweed is under the ascendency of the moon and is therefore associated or connected with feminine energy, love and fertility. Due to its presumed ability to attract the perfect partner. it was a common ingredient in many love potions that were concocted at the time.

 

As a medicine, Culpeper associated Chickweed with the cleansing and healing of wounds and abscesses. He prescribed it to be taken internally rather than externally as a remedy for “inward bruising” and as a diuretic.

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