Botanical name: Solidago virgaurea Family: Asteraceae (Sunflower family)
Synonyms: Aster virgaurea, Solidago nudiflora, Solidago vulgaris
European goldenrod is a perennial often found along roadsides and in open fields with single woody stems that grow to heights of 3-7 ft. It has daisy-like flower-heads but ray florets short and few (6-12). Flower-heads are about 8 mm across. Flower-heads occur in a tight cylindrical panicle, not a broad flat or loose one like Ragworts. Leaves may be toothed but are not lobed. Fruits is about 3 mm long plus a 3 mm tuft of off-white hairs to aid wind dispersal.
Medicinal uses: This plant was cultivated in the Arab world, who used it in their medical system. In the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries it was used in Europe to heal wounds. It has astringent, diuretic, antiseptic and other properties. Modern herbalists also use it to treat catarrh and kidney stones. It is blended with other tonic herbs to cleanse or "flush" the kidneys and bladder, either as part of a healing fast, or to treat cystitis. In the case of a fast, it is made into a combined tincture as noted, taken with a supporting blend of herbal teas, and grape or watermelon juice is drunk through the day, alternating with Potassium broth.Identification credit: Gurcharan Singh
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