Herb: Old Witch Grass


Latin name: Panicum capillare


Family: Gramineae (Grass Family)



Medicinal use of Old Witch Grass:

An infusion of the leaves has been used as an emetic. An infusion of the plant has been used as a reducing aid when dieting.

Description of the plant:



Plant:
Annual


Height:
60 cm
(2 feet)

Flovering:
August to
September

Habitat of the herb:

Open sandy or stony soil or cultivated land in N. America. An occasional abundant weed of carrot crops in E. Anglia.

Edible parts of Old Witch Grass:

Seed - cooked whole or ground into a powder and used as a flour. It is often mixed with corn. The seed is very small and fiddly to use, it has a mild flavour and can be used like millet. In the wild, the seed stem breaks off when the seed is ripe and then blows away in the wind, scattering the seed.

Other uses of the herb:

The grass can be made into brooms.

Propagation of Old Witch Grass:

Seed - sow spring in a greenhouse and only just cover the seed. Germination should take place within a week. Prick out the seedlings into trays or individual pots and plant them out after the last expected frosts.

Cultivation of the herb:

Open sandy or stony soil or cultivated land in N. America. An occasional abundant weed of carrot crops in E. Anglia.

Known hazards of Panicum capillare:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.