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Hedge Bindweed

    Scientific Names

    Hedge Bindweed
    • Convolvulus sepium L.
    • Convolvulaceae
    • Morning-glory family

    Common Names

    ivyDevil's vine
    ivyField bindweed
    ivyGreat bindweed
    ivyHedge lily
    ivyLady's nightcap
    ivyRutland beauty
    ivyTrailing bindweed
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    Parts Usually Used

    Flowering plant, rootstock
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    Description of Plant(s) and Culture

    Hedge bindweed is a perennial herbaceous vine; the trailing or twining stem is glabrous, angular, and from 3-10 feet long, growing from a creeping rootstock. The leaves are alternate, sagittate, on slender petioles. The flaring, funnel-shaped flowers are white or pink with white stripes and grow solitary on long, quadrangular peduncles from the leaf axils from June to October.

    Another variety: Field bindweed (C. arvensis) is a creeping vine; leaves are arrow-shaped, lobes are sharp, not blunt, 1-2 inches long. Flowers are white or pink, to 1 inch long. Blooms June to September. Native Americans used cold leaf tea as a wash on spider bites; internally, to reduce profuse menstrual flow. In European folk use, flower, leaf, and root teas considered laxative. Flower tea used for fevers, wounds. The root is the most active part; strongly purgative.

    Also, there is an herb called Wild Jalap (C. jalapa) very similar to the Hedge bindweed.
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    Where Found

    Grows in waste places, thickets, and cultivated ground in the eastern half of the United States and in all of Europe.
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    Medicinal Properties

    Cholagogue, febrifuge, purgative
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    Used primarily as a purgative but it helps reduce inflammation of mucous membranes and reduces fevers. The powdered root or a decoction made from the plant is used for the above listed. The fresh juice should be taken in small quantities only; in large quantities it produces constipation. Like all strong purgatives, hedge bindweed is not for extended use.
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    Formulas or Dosages

    Decoction: boil 1 tsp. flowering plant in 1 cup water. Take 1 tbsp. at a time, as needed.

    Juice: take 1/2 tsp., once or twice per day.

    Powdered rootstock: take 1 level tsp., once or twice per day.
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    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! Chinese Medicinal Herbs, compiled by Shih-Chen Li, Georgetown Press, San Francisco, California, 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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