COMFREY

COMFREY: “Controversial Wound Treatment”

Digestion, Wound Healing

Also Known As: Boneset, Bruisewort, Healing Herb and Knit Bone

HISTORY:

Comfrey was an absolute must to herbalists for years. Since liver damage and cancer causing chemicals were discovered, scientists have blasted comfrey as being unsafe. The early Greeks and Romans used comfrey to treat wounds and for binding chunks of meat together by boiling it until it becomes a sticky paste. In the 1500s, herbalists made comfrey tea and used it to mend broken bones.

By the 17th century, it was used to to rid pains, wounds and sores of all types. Comfrey has also been used to rid fevers, gout, gangrene, hemorrhoids, respiratory and menstrual conditions.

PREPARATION:

For cuts and scrapes, sprinkle dried powdered roots on sores.

Using comfrey internally continues to be controversial in the USA.

USE: (Grow Your Own)

Easy to grow from seeds but grows best from cutting the roots in spring or fall. Take an inch long piece of root and plant it 3 inches into the soil while spreading them 3 feet apart. Use will drained soil, full sun or partial shade. Comfrey spreads vigorously, so contain them in a pot or border the area with sheet metal to a depth of 12 inches.

Harvest leaves when flowers begin to bud. Roots can be gathered in autumn right after the first frost or when leaves start to appear. Harvest and cut them into slices to dry. Powder them in a blender or coffee grinder and store in a sealed container.

SAFETY:

The FDA lists comfrey as an undefined safety. For healthy, non-pregnant adults without a history of alcoholism or liver disease and not on any drugs, comfrey is considered relatively safe in recommended amounts.