Groundsel

Senecio vulgaris - L.

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Leaves.

Leaves - cooked or raw. The young leaves have been used in many areas as a salad, though this is very inadvisable, since the plant is a cumulative toxin.

Medicinal Uses

Anthelmintic; Antiscorbutic; Diaphoretic; Diuretic; Emmenagogue; Homeopathy; Poultice; Purgative.

Groundsel has a long history of herbal use and, although not an officinal plant, it is still often used by herbalists. The whole herb is anthelmintic, antiscorbutic, diaphoretic, diuretic, emmenagogue and purgative. It is often used as a poultice and is said to be useful in treating sickness of the stomach, whilst a weak infusion is used as a simple and easy purgative. The plant can be harvested in May and dried for later use, or the fresh juice can be extracted and used as required. Use with caution. This plant should not be used by pregnant women,A homeopathic remedy is made from the plant. It is used in the treatment of menstrual disorders and nose bleeds.

Cultivation details

A common weed of cultivated land, it does not require cultivation. Groundsel is a good food plant for the caterpillars of many butterfly and moth species, and is one of only two species that provide food for cinnabar moth caterpillars.

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