People have been using the thorns of this thistle for centuries, and this is the origin of its name, wild teasel. However, though machines do wool carding at present, this plant still offers us good services as a medicinal plant.
Wild Teasel Scientific Facts
- Scientific synonyms: Dipsacus fullonum L.
- Other names: Teasel.
- French: Cardege sauvage.
- Spanish: Caseharden.
- Environment: Common in cold, clayey soils in central and southern Europe. It grows in most parts of America.
- Description: Plant of the Dipsacaceae family, growing up to two meters high, with thorny stem and flower chapters formed by unions of many tiny flowers, lilac or pink in color, which end in 6-10 cm large thorns.
- Parts of the plant used medicinally: The root.
Healing Properties and Uses
The entire plant, and especially its root, contains a glycoside called scabioside, and salicylic acid, and potassium salts. These substances explain their medicinal properties: diuretic (increases urine production) and sudorific (increases sweat production).
The root of wild teasel is a good blood purifier. It has mild but long-lasting effects and can be taken in any dose since our body can tolerate it. It is instrumental in the following cases:
- Excess of fluids in tissues: edema or hydropsy caused by any reason.
- Excess of uric acid (arthritis). It promotes the elimination of uric acid and other waste substances which flow into the blood.
- Acne, eczema, and rashes. It increases sweating, thus the elimination of substances that irritate the skin.
How to use Wild Teasel
- Decoction with 40-50 grams of ground root in two liters of water. Boil until the liquid reduces by one-half, then strain and sweeten with honey. Drink several cups daily. This treatment must last for some months.
George D. Pamplona-Roger, M.D. “Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants.” George D. Pamplona-Roger, M.D. Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants. Ed. Francesc X. Gelabert. vols. 2 San Fernando de Henares: Editorial Safeliz, 2000. 572. Print. [wild teasel]