Herb: Lead Plant

Latin name: Amorpha canescens

Family: Leguminosae

Medicinal use of Lead Plant:

An infusion of the leaves has been used to kill pinworms or any intestinal worms. The infusion is also used to treat eczema, the report does not say it if is used internally or externally. The dried and powdered leaves are applied as a salve to cuts and open wounds. A decoction of the root is used to treat stomach pains. A moxa of the twigs has been used in the treatment of neuralgia and rheumatism.

Description of the plant:


120 cm
(4 feet)

July to

Habitat of the herb:

Dry sandy prairies, hills and woodland.

Edible parts of Lead Plant:

An infusion of the dried leaves makes a pleasant tasting yellow-coloured tea.

Other uses of the herb:

Plants have an extensive root system, they tolerate poor dry soils and are also wind resistant, they are used as a windbreak and also to prevent soil erosion. Resinous pustules on the plant contain "amorpha", a contact and stomachic insecticide that also acts as an insect repellent.

Propagation of Lead Plant:

Seed - presoak for 12 hours in warm water and sow early spring in a greenhouse. The seed usually germinates in 1 - 2 months at 20C. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for their first winter. Plant them out in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, June/July in a frame. High percentage. Cuttings of mature wood of the current seasons growth, autumn, in a sheltered position outdoors. Takes 12 months. Suckers in spring just before new growth begins. Layering in spring .

Cultivation of the herb:

Dry sandy prairies, hills and woodland.

Known hazards of Amorpha canescens:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.