Herb latin name: Angelica anomala

Family: Umbelliferae

Medicinal use of Angelica anomala:

The root is analgesic, antibacterial, antidote, carminative, depuritive, diaphoretic, poultice and is also used to treat women's complaints. The drug (an extract of the root?) lowers arterial pressure, increases diuresis and stimulates contraction of the smooth muscles, especially the uterus, but without causing abortion. The plant is used in the treatment of colds and headaches, coryza, leucorrhoea, boils and abscesses. Small quantities of angelicotoxin, one of the active ingredients in the root, have an excitatory effect on the respiratory centre, central nervous system and vasculomotor centre. It increases the rate of respiration, increases blood pressure, decreases the pulse, increases the secretion of saliva and induces vomiting. In large doses it can cause convulsions and generalized paralysis.

Description of the plant:


180 cm
(6 feet)

Habitat of the herb:

Damp habitats in C. and N. Japan.

Propagation of Angelica anomala:

Seed - best sown in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe since the seed only has a short viability. Seed can also be sown in the spring, though germination rates will be lower. It requires light for germination. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a cold frame for their first winter, planting them out into their permanent positions in the spring. The seed can also be sow in situ as soon as it is ripe.

Cultivation of the herb:

Damp habitats in C. and N. Japan.

Known hazards of Angelica anomala:

One report says that caution is advised in the use of this plant but it gives no reason. All members of this genus contain furocoumarins, which increase skin sensitivity to sunlight and may cause dermatitis.

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.