Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Plantago lanceolata, the strength of the sword and the beauty of an angel.

I realise that I may have become a little obsessed/over enthusiastic about Dandelions just recently,
so I’m moving on.

There are so many herbal goodies bursting out of the hedgerow at the moment it’s difficult to know where to begin. Having said that, I’ve noticed that Ribwort plantain or Plantago lanceolata is strutting it’s stuff spectacularly well today.

Most plants are lush at the moment due to all the rain so the Plantain leaves are fresh and extremely green. The sword shaped leaves of this architectural little plant have deep ribs running length ways, hence ribwort. The darkest brown mouse like flower heads,  will become more oblong and a softer brown later in the summer. With pale yellow anthers dancing round it, giving this angel of a plant a halo. I have always thought of this herb as an angel.

Like the Dandelion, this little plant has It has both structure and beauty and could look great in a terracotta pot! 

Ribwort plantain showing off his ribs!

Medicinal uses 

Plantago is a famous wound healing herb. It has antiseptic and astringent qualities, so an infusion of leaves used as a wash for cuts and grazes helps to stop bleeding and clean the injury, great in the first aid box. Fresh leaves can be bruised (or chewed) and applied to a cut or an insect bite for instant relief.

Plantago is a wonderful cool and soothing remedy. Used for irritable or sore respiratory and digestive systems, this herb helps an irritable bowel, bronchitis and even toothache.

I have a huge respect for this amazing healing herb.
Both strength and beauty in large portions.



  1. No word for a while! Any top tips for plants which thrive in this awful weather?

  2. Hi there Mamacook, yes it has been too long and no excuse really, just too much "stuff"!
    Interestingly, there is one fragrantly fantastic plant taking centre stage in the hedgerows at the moment which is Meadowsweet. This sweet scented herb loves damp ground. In fact I feel a blog coming on..... thanks for the reminder.

    1. Cool! I'm looking forward to seeing what you say about it!

      Also considering a difficult personal situation I'm going through, are there any common herbs you'd recommend to balance me out a bit and keep me calm and focussed?