PENNYROYAL


PENNYROYAL: “Good Herb”

Colds, Cough Remedy, Decongestant, Digestive Aid, Dizziness, Flu, Headache, Insect Repellant

HISTORY:

Pennyroyal has an undeserved reputation. Critics charge that taking in small amounts can be fatal. It is true that taking in as little as 2 tablespoons can cause death. This dried herb is not dangerous if used in medicinal amounts. The leaves and flower tops are very aromatic and safe to use as a decongestant and cough remedy.

From 1831 to 1916, pennyroyal was listed in the U.S. Pharmacopoeia as a digestive aid, stimulant and menstruation promoter. From 1916 to 1931, pennyroyal oil was listed as an abortion inducer and intestinal irritant. Contemporary herbalist recommend not to use the oil due to it’s toxicity, but to use the herb externally as an insect repellent and to treat burns and cuts.

PREPARATION:

  • Flea Collar:

For a herbal per flea collar, use a pennyroyal garland or a bag of the herbs. Hang then from a regular collar.

  • Infusion:

Add 1 to 2 teaspoonfuls of dried herb to one cup of boiling water. Steep for 10 to 15 minutes. Drink up to 2 cups daily. The aroma resembles spearmint, but sharper. Taste will be bitter initially, but leaves a pleasant lasting taste.

  • Insect Repellant:

Use fresh crushed plant material and rub it around the body or mix a tincture into a skin cream and rub onto the body.

  • Tincture:

Use 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon no more than twice daily.

USE: (Grow Your Own)

Use rich, sandy, slightly acidic loamy, well watered soil under full sun. Sow seeds in the spring or fall and cover them with 1/4 inch of soil. Thin the seedlings about five inches in spacings. Harvest the leaves and flower tops when they are in full bloom. Cut them a few inches above ground and hang them to dry in the autumn.

SAFETY:

Use in medicinal amounts, especially when using pennyroyal oil which is more potent than the dried plant material.