Hops is a perennial vine, native to the Northern Hemisphere that grows vertically up to 33 feet tall. It has dark green, heart-shaped leaves. Male and female flowers grow on separate vines. Hops are the dried cone-like female flowers or fruits and are yellowish-green in color. The vine grows to its full height in one season and then dies back to roots and short stems for overwintering. The leaves are sparse and can be opposing or alternate along the length of the vine. Leaves cluster around and cover the fruits wherever they appear. Taken internally, Hops has been used in Europe to reduce anxiety and help with some sleep disorders. Externally, it is often an ingredient in skin creams.
History and Folklore:
Humulus lupulus is the most commonly used species of Hops. The name lupulus means small wolf. The Romans incorrectly believed that the Hops vine strangles the plants around it as a wolf does with its prey. It is believed that the word Hops comes from the Anglo-Saxon word hoppan which means “to climb.”
Cultivation and Harvest:
Harvest the entire aerial part of the plant between August and September. After harvest, separate the flower heads (strobiles) and buds from the rest of the aerial parts.
Do not take if pregnant or nursing. Avoid in persons with depression or in women with estrogen-related breast cancer.
Traditional Herbal Actions:
Nervine, Antibacterial, Antispasmodic, Diuretic, Antimicrobial
Zarsa, Lupulo, H. Neomexicana, H. Lupulus var. Lupuloides
Ingredients: Hops (Humulus lupulus)
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*This statement has not been verified by the FDA and is only referenced here as a fun fact and/or for historical commentary, is not to be used as medical advice in any way. Consult your doctor before ingesting any herbal product.