Saturday, May 22, 2010
Sweet Flower with the smelly root
THIS IS A POST IN PROGRESS - MORE DETAILS AND MORE PICTURES COMING SOON
Botanical Name: Valeriana officinalis
Part used: root parts
This is a beautiful plant for your flowerbed. It has pretty white flowers sorta like Queen Anne's Lace, but sooooo fragrant. I really enjoy the air when it is in bloom. It is good in the flower bed, give it a lil space because it tends to spread some, and you want it to - since it's the root that is most beneficial. But don't worry about it taking over the flowerbed, it has more manners than those notorious mints - spearmint or peppermint.
Interestingly, with such a beautifully fragrant blossom you wouldn't think the root would be so smelly. The root is the part used for herbal medicine. The root has a very earthy, dirty, musty smell. If you like patchouli, you probably won't mind valerian. If you think patchouli smells like dirty socks, you'll likely think valerian does too. Don't fret. You don't have to like the root smell to use and appreciate it's benefits. This isn't usually a single herb tea, (although it can be found in tea blends) it is commonly capsuled or tinctured. And the tincture really isn't as bad as you'd think!
It is not commonly found as a wild weed/herb, but it is sometimes considered a flowerbed plant.
So why did I post about it on this weed site?
For the same reason I've posted about violets, bee balm, and others.
Because it's great to consider using your flowerbed as a dual purpose area.
Choosing flowers with beneficial uses besides their beauty is a great thing!
Walk into a health food store and ask an employee for details on valerian and you're sure to get a comment. It's well known for it's benefits for insomnia, stress, nervous conditions, hyper children, and more!
No need to write more - I'll just post a few links and you can check it out from there:
Right click on the links to open in a new tab or window for easy viewing.