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Verbena hastata, Verbena officinalis
Blue vervain relaxes the nervous system and offers reliable pain relief, especially when it is used in poultices for rheumatism, joint pain, and neuralgia. In tea, the leaves help ease headache, bladder discomfort, and sore throat. Try blue vervain tea next time you need an expectorant for chest congestion or bronchitis.
Parts Used: Leaves
Precautions: Do not use during pregnancy.
Identifying/Growing: Blue vervain can be found growing wild in meadows, waste places, and along roadsides throughout most of North America and Europe. Lance-shaped leaves with rough, toothy edges are arranged on stems averaging 3 to 7 feet, and little purplish blue flowers emerge from slender spikes located at the top of the plant. This lovely herb is easy to grow. Blue vervain needs light to germinate, so simply sow the seeds and water them without covering them with soil. Be sure to keep the seeds moist until they germinate. For stronger remedies,
pick the herbs before they flower and dry them right away. Allow some of your blue vervain to flower and go to seed if you’d like a steady supply year after year; it self-seeds and will come back each spring.