Common name: Ribwort Plantain
Latin name: Plantago lanceolata
Other names: English Plantain, Narrowleaf Plantain
Habitat: Plant can be found on neutral and basic soils, on lawns, pastures, roadsides, fields and meadows. It is a common weed on cultivated grounds. Native to Europe, Northern and Central Asia.
History: The plant was in use from ancient times.
Description: Perennial plant, grows to 0, 4 meters. Leaves are lanceolate, scarcely toothed and slightly hairy. Usually plantain has a rosette of basal leaves with one flowering stalk. Flowering stalks are often slightly furrowed and angular, ending in an oblong spike of small flowers. Flowers are densely concentrated along the spike. Blooming period lasts from April to August. The spike then turns from green to light brown.
Parts used: Leaves, seed, root.
Useful components: Mucilage, tannin and silicic acid.
Medicinal use: Ribwort Plantain makes an effective treatment for wound bleeding. It contains epidermal growth factor, stimulating the repair of damaged tissue. Leaves extract has antibacterial properties. Plantain can be used in an asortment of treatments: diarrhea, gastritis, hemorrhage, hemorrhoids, in cases of irritable bowel, against bronchitis, catarrh, sinusitis and asthma. Externally, decoction obtained from the leaves is used in cases of skin inflammations, cuts, stings and malignant ulcers. Plantain root is useful in cases of rattlesnake bite. Seeds, having a high mucilage content, are a good remedy against parasitic worms. Distilled water made from the plant makes an excellent eye lotion. Tea made from the seed is helpful in treatment of diarrhea, dysentery and bleedings of mucous membranes.
Safety: No known contraindications. Still, some herbs could react with certain medication. Therefore, it is highly advisable to consult your doctor before consumption of any herb.