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.

We wish you peace and health!

Water Eryngo

Scientific Names

Water Eryngo

  • Eryngium aquaticum L.
  • Umbelliferae
  • Umbel family

Common Names

  • Button snakeroot
  • Corn snakeroot
  • Rattlesnake’s master
  • Rattlesnake weed

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Parts Usually Used

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Water Eryngo

Description of Plant(s) and Culture

Water eryngo is a native perennial herb; its glaucous tuberous root sends up a simple stem, 1-5 feet in height. The long, taper-pointed leaves, 1 to 2 feet in length and 1/2 to 1 inch wide are net-veined and entire or remotely toothed. Blooming in August, the small, whitish flowers grow in spikes subtended by a whorl of bracts. The root is tuberous, aromatic and of a sweet acrid taste, resembling the parsnip.
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Where Found

Grows in swamps and low wetlands from New Jersey to Georgia; west to Texas, Missouri and Minnesota.
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Medicinal Properties

Diaphoretic, diuretic, emetic, expectorant, stimulant
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Legends, Myths and Stories

Rattlesnake master is used as a common name for Virginia snakeroot (E. aquaticum) and for E. yuccifolium, and for False Aloe (Manfreda virginica) of the Amaryllis family.
There are about 220 species in the genus, of which about 22 are found in North America.
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The root is very useful when chewed to promote the flow of saliva and thus aids digestion. In large doses, it is an emetic. It has been a remedy for chronic laryngitis and bronchitis, dropsy, gonorrhea, gleet, stones, inflammations of the sexual and urinary organs, and impotence. Native Americans used it as an emetic and diuretic, and the infusion to reduce fevers. It is a good substitute for Senega snakeroot (Polygala senega). Used internally and externally, it cures the bite of snakes and insects and wounds.
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Formulas or Dosages

Infusion: use 1 heaping tsp. root to 1 pint boiling water. Take 1 tbsp. 2 to 4 times per day.

Tincture: a dose is from 10 to 20 drops.
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Buy It! American Folk Medicine, by Clarence Meyer, Meyerbooks, publisher, PO Box 427, Glenwood, Illinois 60425, 1973

Buy It! Culpeper’s Complete Herbal & English Physician: Updated With 117 Modern Herbs, by Nicholas Culpeper, Meyerbooks, publisher, PO Box 427, Glenwood, Illinois 60425, 1990, (reprint of 1814)

Buy It! Eastern/Central Medicinal Plants, by Steven Foster and James A. Duke., Houghton Mifflin Company, 215 Park Avenue South, New York, NY 10000

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! 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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