Medicinal Herbs Online
HomeHerbsDis-EasesResourcesBookstoreLinksSearchBlog

Herbal Glossary | Medicinal Glossary | Herbal Preparations | Ayervedic Formulas | Chinese Formulas
Folk Remedies | Native American Formulas | Herbal Remedies | Nutritional Guidelines

Horsemint


    Scientific Names

    Horsemint
    Horsemint
    • Monarda punctata L.
    • Labiatae
    • Mint family

    Common Names

    ivyAmerican horsemint
    ivyMonarda
    Back to Top


    Parts Usually Used

    Leaves, flowering tops
    Back to Top


    Description of Plant(s) and Culture

    Horsemint is a native strongly aromatic biennial or a short-lived perennial plant 1-4 feet tall; the branched, round four-angled, stem bears opposite, lanceolate, downy leaves dotted with small depressions.  The two-lipped  flowers, like gaping mouths,  are yellowish with red spots and grow in successive axillary whorls subtended by large, white-lilac, lance-shaped bracts around them.  July to October.

    Other varieties: Oswego tea (M. didyma) and Wild bergamot (M. fistulosa); also called horsemint (M arvensis) which is more common in India.
    Back to Top


    Where Found

    Found mainly in the eastern and central United States.  Likes dry places and on sandy soils; on the coastal plain from New Jersey to Florida and Texas, also further west from Michigan and Minnesota south to Missouri.
    Back to Top


    Medicinal Properties

    Cardiac, carminative, diaphoretic, diuretic, sudorific, emmenagogue, aromatic, stomachic, calmative, mild alterative
    Back to Top


    Biochemical Information

    Volatile oil, menthol, menthone, d-iperitone, lemonene, hexenolphenylacetate, ethylamyulacarbinol, neomenthol
    Back to Top


    Uses

    Horsemint tea can be taken for flatulent colic, suppressed urine, diarrhea, rheumatism, and digestive and other stomach problems such as nausea and vomiting.  Native Americans used the plant for fever, flu, catarrhs, chills, decreased menstrual flow, and inflammations.  One tribe drank a cold extract to relieve backache, and another to stimulate heart action.  The oil derived from the leaves promote sweating when rubbed on.  Oil high in thymol expels worms.  Thymol, now manufactured synthetically, was once commercially derived from thyme (Thymus species).

    During World War I, commercial thyme fields were destroyed in Europe and horsemint was grown in the United States as a substitute source of thymol.

    Horsemint is efficient in the control of vomiting due to exhaustion, persistent nausea with flatulence, or vomiting of alcoholics in whom it will impart a temporary tone to the stomach.
    Back to Top


    Formulas or Dosages

    Infusion: steep 1 tsp. leaves or tops in 1 cup water.  Take 1-2 cups a day.

    Oil of horsemint, diluted with soap, can be rubbed on to alleviate the pains of rheumatism and backache.

    Take 10-30 drops of the tincture daily in a glass of water.
    Back to Top

     

    Bibliography

    Buy It! Back to Eden, by Jethro Kloss; Back to Eden Publishing Co., Loma Linda, CA 92354, Original copyright 1939, revised edition 1994

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

    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! American Folk Medicine/i>, by Clarence Meyer, Meyerbooks, publisher, PO Box 427, Glenwood, Illinois 60425, 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

    Buy It! How Indians Use Wild Plants for Food, Medicine & Crafts, by Frances Densmore, Dover Publications, Inc., 180 Varick Street, New York, NY 10014, first printed by the United States Government Printing Office, Washington, in 1928, this Dover edition 1974

    Buy It! The Yoga of Herbs: An Ayurvedic Guide to Herbal Medicine, by Dr. David Frawley & Dr. Vasant Lad, Lotus Press, Twin Lakes, Wisconsin, Second edition, 1988.

    Buy It! An Instant Guide to Medicinal Plants, by Pamela Forey and Ruth Lindsay, Crescent Books (January 27, 1992).

    Buy It! The Magic of Herbs in Daily Living, by Richard Lucas, Parker Publishing Co. (1988).

    Back to Top

Gaiam Yoga Club

Copyright © 1996-2014 Lynn DeVries, all rights reserved.