Fleabane for Urinary Health
Fleabane is a regional plant that has some great value for urinary health of all kinds. Fleabane contains some essential oils that have some proven health and healing benefits. Unfortunately, Fleabane is not commercially available as a natural medicine either in tea or tincture form. This is one of those plants that you will need to harvest to create your own treatment. There are many plants that are not commercially available yet that have very powerful health benefits. Fleabane is just one of many plants which I will cover in future articles.
The particular genus and species name for Fleabane is Philadelphia fleabane (Erigeron philadelphicus). This plant comes into flower in late May to late June here in Minnesota. It looks like an aster and is related to the aster family but this comes into bloom way before the aster does. The spring appearance is how you can tell it is Philadelphia fleabane. Some adjoining property to ours has an excess of Fleabane this year as a previous corn and bean field has been converted to government set aside acreage. Since Fleabane loves disturbed soil, it is growing in large abundance.
Some people call it daisy fleabane which describes the white or purple hue flower yet the official name is Philadelphia fleabane. No matter what the color, the properties are the same. This is an herbaceous plant that is distinguished with its alternate simple leaves and hairy stems. The blooms of the fleabane are generally pink with a yellow center, but can vary in color and shade. The lower leaves are heart shaped. This plant likes to grow along roadsides, open woods and in fields and where there is disturbed ground. It grows to be about 2 1/2 feet tall.
Fleabane is used for urinary problems such as painful urination, and inflammation of the urethritis with scalding urine. It can be beneficial to reduce involuntary urination especially for children at night. Fleabane is also good for renal or vesical pain; urinary stones, amenorrhea, dysmenorrhea with back pain and blood clots. Fleabane is used as an astringent, diuretic, spasmolytic and emmenagogue. It also has a history of relieving gout symptoms.
The Fleabane flowers are a mild antispasmodic as are the sister flowers to the asters that come out in the late summer and early fall. They are good for rheumatism, gout and a fever with chills. They are also used for spasms and epilepsy. The root of Fleabane is also used as an antispasmodic.
The leaves and flowers can be dried to make tea or steep in 100 proof alcohol to make a tincture. This is an herb you would want to use fresh as the dried herb loses their essential oils and thus health benefits. The tea can also be used as a wash for head lice giving its name Fleabane.
CAUTIONS: Certain people can be sensitive when handling the leaves from this plant as one may develop dermatitis. It should also never be used during pregnancy.