The Medicinal Herb Info site was created to help educate visitors about the often forgotten wisdom of the old ways of treating illnesses. Many of today's drugs and medicines were originally derived from natural ingredients, combinations of plants and other items found in nature.

We are not suggesting that you ignore the help of trained medical professionals, simply that you have additional options available for treating illnesses. Often the most effective treatment involves a responsible blend of both modern and traditional treatments.

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Larkspur

Scientific Names

Larkspur

  • Delphinium consolida L.
  • Consolida regalis L.
  • Ranunculaceae
  • Buttercup family

Common Names

  • Branching larkspur
  • Delphinium
  • Knight’s spur
  • Lark’s heel
  • Lark’s claw
  • Staggerweed
  • Stavesacre

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Parts Usually Used

Flowering plant, root, seeds
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Larkspur

Description of Plant(s) and Culture

Larkspur is an annual plant; it has a slender taproot that produces the leafy, branching stem growing to a height of 2-4 feet and bears both petioled and sessile, finely divided leaves. The blue or purple flowers feature a spur projecting backward from the upper part and grow in terminal racemes from June to August.

Another variety: Red larkspur (D. nudicaule), also known as sleep root. Root has narcotic properties, which are made use of in causing an opponent to become stupid in gambling. Tea from root.
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Where Found

Grows in rich or dry woods and on rocky slopes throughout the United States but most commonly in the western states; it is also common in Europe.
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Medicinal Properties

Anthelmintic, cathartic, emetic, narcotic, parasitcide, purgative
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Biochemical Information

A poisonous alkaloid, calcatrippine, which is the same as aconitine
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Uses

Larkspur has a relatively weak action, is not much used medicinally today.

Poisoning is possible if large quantities are consumed; seeds and the young plants are dangerous.

Larkspur is made into a lotion or tincture for topical application to kill lice, crabs, and other parasites. Do not use internally
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Formulas or Dosages

Gather the flowering plant before seed formation.

Infusion: steep 1 tsp. dried plant in 1 cup water for 5 minutes. Take 1 cup per day. Do not use internally.
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Warning

Several species are poisonous. Poisoning is possible if large quantities are consumed; seeds and the young plants are dangerous. Do not use internally.
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Bibliography

Buy It! The Herb Book, by John Lust, Bantam Books, 666 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY. copyright 1974.

Buy It! Indian Herbalogy of North America, by Alma R. Hutchens, Shambala Publications, Inc., Horticultural Hall, 300 Massachusetts Avenue, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, 1973

Buy It! Indian Uses of Native Plants, by Edith Van Allen Murphey, Meyerbooks, publisher, PO Box 427, Glenwood, Illinois 60425, copyright 1958, print 1990

Buy It! Planetary Herbology, by Michael Tierra, C.A., N.D., O.M.D., Lotus Press, PO Box 325, Twin Lakes. WI 53181., Copyright 1988, published 1992

Buy It! Webster’s New World Dictionary, Third College Edition, Victoria Neufeldt, Editor in Chief, New World Dictionaries: A Division of Simon & Schuster, Inc., 15 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10023

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