Plantain (Plantago major and Plantago lanceolata) is a common “weed” that can be easily found in almost any yard. There are over 200 varieties, the most common being English Plantain and Common Plantain. (The above photo is Common Plantain) Plantain contains astringent properties that both cool and soothe annoying bug bites and painful stings. It can also be used to treat minor cuts, sunburn, dandruff and eczema. Another great use is to make a tea out of plantain leaves to soothe a sore throat.
“Plantain is very high in beta carotene (A) and calcium. It
also provides ascorbic acid (C), and vitamin K. Among the more notable chemicals
found in plantain are allantion, apigenin, aucubin, baicalein, linoleic acid,
oleanolic acid, sorbitol, and tannin. Together these constituents are thought to
give plantain mild anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antihemorrhagic, and
expectorant actions. Acubin has been reported in the Journal Of Toxicology as a
powerful anti-toxin. Allantoin has been proved to promote wound healing, speed
up cell regeneration, and have skin-softening effects.” (Prairie Land Herbs)
The easiest way to utilize plantain to treat a minor cut, bite or sting is to simply chew up a leaf and apply directly to the affected area. Tinctures and poultices can also be made using vinegar or oil. Lisa over at 5 Orange Potatoes has a wonderful post on how to make your own plantain tincture or oil. I will be havesting some plantain from my own yard before the first frost to use this winter. I am also going to dry or freeze some plantain leaves to make tea to help soothe the sore throats I know we will all suffer from in the coming months!
Has anyone used plantain and if so what were the results?