Monday, April 9, 2012

Herb of the Week: Milkweed

Milkweed - Asclepias syriaca (A.tuberosa, A.speciosa)
Common name: Pleurisy Root
Folk Name: Butterfly Weed, Canada Root, Flux Root, Swallow-Wort, Tuber Root, White Root, Wind Root.
Parts Used: Flower, leaf, shoot/stem, root, fruit/nut, seed
Planet: Mars
Element: Fire
Gender: Masculine
Goddesses/Gods: Asclepius (the God of medicine and healing in ancient Greek mythology) which from whom this plant has taken its name.
Medicinal Uses: The root increases bronchial dilation and lymphatic drainage and is a specific treatment for pleurisy and bronchitis. It is given for some urinary problems. Large doses of the fresh leaf tea cause vomiting. The sap contains the enzyme asclepain which helps remove warts. The root has been used to cause temporary sterility. The seeds have a silky tuft to aid distribution which is used as pillow stuffing. All milkweeds (Asclepias tuberosa, A. syraca, A. speciosa) are potentially dangerous, use with caution.
Folklore: Pleurisy Root was widely used among Native Americans; it was on of the most important medicines of the Menomini tribe. Milkweed attracts Monarch Butterflies; it is the only plant that the monarch larvae eat.
Magickal Uses: Protection during surgery; health and healing in general. Used in sachets, mojo bags and gris-gris.

Read more about Milkweed at

1 comment: