Herb: Purple Avens

Latin name: Geum triflorum

Family: Rosaceae (Rose Family)

Medicinal use of Purple Avens:

A strong decoction of the roots is used as a tonic in the treatment of severe coughs and fevers. This decoction can also be used as an eye wash and as a mouth wash for sore throats. An infusion of the roots, mixed with oil, can be applied as a salve to sores, rashes, blisters and flesh wounds. An infusion can also be used as a wash for aching joints, stiff sore muscles etc.

Description of the plant:


30 cm
(11 3/4 inch)

July to


Habitat of the herb:

Damp places and mountain screes.

Edible parts of Purple Avens:

A decoction of the roots is a tea substitute. It tastes like a weak sassafras tea. A brew was used in Indian sweat houses as a body wash for aches and pains.

Other uses of the herb:

The crushed ripe seeds are used as a perfume.

Propagation of Purple Avens:

Seed - sow spring or autumn in a cold frame. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in the summer" Division in spring or autumn. This should be done every 3 - 4 years in order to maintain the vigour of the plant. Very easy, larger clumps can be replanted direct into their permanent positions, though it is best to pot up smaller clumps and grow them on in a cold frame until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the spring.

Cultivation of the herb:

Damp places and mountain screes.

Known hazards of Geum triflorum:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.