Medicinal Herbs Online

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


    Scientific Names

    • Vernonia fasciculata L.
    • Compositae
    • Composite family
    Back to Top

    Parts Usually Used

    Root, leaves
    Back to Top

    Description of Plant(s) and Culture

    Ironweed is a coarse, perennial plant; the simple, glabrous stem grows 2-10 feet high and bears alternate, ascending, purplish-green, linear or oblong-lanceolate leaves, 4-8 inches long. The reddish-purple or purple flowers grow in dense cymes of short-peduncled heads, somewhat like miniature thistles, from July to September.

    Another variety: Also called ironweed, (V. glauca) is a blue-green perennial, 2-5 feet tall. Leaves are on stems only, not at the base; oval to lance-shaped and narrowly sharp-pointed at the tip and base. Flowers July to October. Seed crowns are yellowish. Found in rich woods; New Jersey to Georgia; Alabama to Pennsylvania. The root used by Native Americans as a blood tonic, to regulate menses, relieve pain after childbirth, and for bleeding, and stomachaches.
    Back to Top

    Where Found

    Grows in woods, on prairies, and along riverbanks and streambanks in the states west of Ohio.
    Back to Top

    Medicinal Properties

    Bitter tonic, deobstruent, alterative
    Back to Top


    The root is taken in the form of a powder or a decoction primarily to stimulate appetite and promote digestion. Useful for female complaints, amenorrhea, dysmenorrhea, leucorrhea, and menorrhagia. A remedy for chills and fevers, scrofula, diseases of the skin, syphilis. A decoction of the leaves is used as a gargle for sore throat.
    Back to Top

    Formulas or Dosages

    Decoction: use 1 tsp. rootstock with 1 cup water. Take 1-2 cups per day, 1/2 to 1 hour before meals.
    Back to Top


    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

    Back to Top

Gaiam Yoga Club

Copyright © 1996-2017 Lynn DeVries, all rights reserved.