Valerian is a perennial plant that grows a flower stalk 5 to 6 feet tall with bright green, spade-shaped leaves and bright white or pink flower clusters that bloom in late spring. Valerian prefers moist, rich soil. It usually grows in small crevices, on shady slopes, or attached to mossy rock formations. The flowers have a pleasant smell that is contrary to the smelly sock odor of the roots. The roots are made into teas, tinctures, or dried and powdered for use in capsules and pills. In ancient Greece, Valerian was used to aid in menstrual pain, muscle pain, bronchial spasms, and intestinal cramps. They Believed Its calming effects aid in relaxation and sleep. It was also used as a cough suppressant.
History and Folklore:
Valerian root was used in ancient Greece and Rome It is thought that the Pied Piper of Hamelin used Valerian root to lure the rats away from town since rats and cats are both attracted to the pungent odor.
Cultivation and Harvest:
Gather the roots in the summer or fall after the flowers have bloomed.
Potential to interact with sleep medications and sedatives. Avoid during pregnancy, while nursing or in children under the age of 2.
Traditional Herbal Actions:
Tobacco Root, setwall, all-heal
Valeriana acutiloba, V. arizonica, V. californica, V. dioica, V. edulis, V. occidentalis, V. sitchensis
Tincture Ingredients: Valerian (Valeriana officinalis)
*These statements have 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.
None of these items or statements are approved by FDA. Consult your physician before taking any supplement. Do not take herbs or tinctures during pregnancy without consulting your healthcare provider. This product is not intended to diagnose or treat any disease. All information here is for entertainment and educational purposes only.