Herb: Ploughman's Spikenard


Latin name: Inula conyza


Synonyms: Conyza squarrosa, Inula squarrosa, Inula vulgaris


Family: Compositae



Medicinal use of Ploughman's Spikenard:

The herb is antiscrofulatic, emmenagogue and vulnerary. The plant was considered to be a good wound herb and it was frequently taken in decoction for bruises, ruptures, internal wounds etc. It was applied externally to treat itchy skin.

Description of the plant:



Plant:
Biennial/Perennial


Height:
120 cm
(4 feet)

Flovering:
July to
August


Scent:
Scented
Biennial/Perennial

Habitat of the herb:

Dry or rocky slopes and cliffs, also in open scrub on calcareous soils.

Other uses of Ploughman's Spikenard:

The leaves are burnt and used as an insecticide and parasiticide, especially against fleas. Even the smell of the plant is said to drive fleas away. The root used to be burnt upon a fire in order to scent a room.

Propagation of the herb:

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. If you have sufficient seed, it is worthwhile trying a sowing in situ in the spring or the autumn.

Cultivation of Ploughman's Spikenard:

Dry or rocky slopes and cliffs, also in open scrub on calcareous soils.

Known hazards of Inula conyza:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.