Ground Ivy

Ground Ivy

Glechoma hederacea

Ground Ivy is a creeping perennial that helps aid in digestion, congestion and menstrual cramps. Ground Ivy is in the mint family and can also be used to treat headaches and respiratory issues. It also could be therapeutic in immune-related inflammatory diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis.

  • Plant type: Perennial
  • Other names: Creeping Charlie, Alehoof, Gill-Over-the-Ground
  • Medicinal: Yes
  • Culinary: No
  • Ceremonial: No
  • Parts Used: Leaves, Stems and Flowers
  • Side Effects: Ground ivy may be abortifacient, so caution should be exercised in those who may be or are trying to become pregnant.
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About Ground Ivy

Ground Ivy is the famous creeper that belongs to the mint family, Lamiaceae. This small plant is also called creeping Charlie, Alehoof, Gill-over-the-ground, and so forth. Ground Ivy is an evergreen perennial plant that can be clearly recognized by its absurd kidney-shaped leaves with scallop-edged. It has small flowers that appear in the group of twos or sometimes threes, showcasing bluish-violet color.

Ground Ivy is considered as a weed all around the world because of its rapid rhizomatous reproduction. It thrives in moist regions and before anyone could know, the plant takes hold of the whole garden if it is not pulled out frequently. Apart from its precarious garden-snatching behavior, ground ivy proffers quite beneficial medicinal perks. Due to its earthy flavor and minty aroma, the herb has found its place in imparting flavors to the soups, casseroles, and salads.

Ground Ivy is one of the best go-to remedies for ENT infections. (Ear- Nose-Throat). It helps to treat the stagnation of fluid in the sinus cavity and ear that further aids in reducing the inflammation, headache, and tinnitus. Ground Ivy does a stellar job at improving the quality of hearing which can be either due to tinnitus or mental and emotional discomfort.

Ground Ivy is packed with phenols, triterpenoids, and polyunsaturated fatty acids as active ingredients that compel the herb to do its best.

Growing

Ground Ivy can be grown indoors and outdoors healthily, as long as the gardener knows what makes it happy.

Ground Ivy can thrive in any soil but loamy soil that is rich in organic matter and drains easily to favor the desirable growth. Sunlight can hinder the growth of ground ivy, so it is better to place the pot in dappled shade. As for outdoor ground ivy plants, green shade is used to filter the sun rays. The seeds of Ground Ivy can be planted in spring or fall.

Ground requires a mediocre supply of water as it can endure the drought conditions. If the plant is over-watered, then it may subject to root rot. To witness a healthy growth, Ground Ivy is fertilized weekly throughout the growing season.

Ground Ivy follows quite a rare yet amazing breeding system, gynodioecy. Here, hermaphrodite and female flowers coexist in the same plant. After the pollination, each pollinated flower produces four seeds that can be dispersed.

After receiving the favorable conditions that are necessary for germination, the seed germinates and grows up into a beautiful plant.

Harvesting

The aerial parts of ground ivy are harvested amidst its flowering, preferably in the middle of the period.

The aerial parts of the Ground Ivy are harvested by making use of pruning shears. Around 50% portion of the stalk is cut to be used for relative purposes.

Ground Ivy is dried in a well-ventilated space, out of the sunlight. The leaves and flowers are then separated from the stalk to be crumple and stored in an airtight jar.

Usage

Ground Ivy is used to make a diverse variety of preparatory forms for the welfare of mankind.

  • Tea - Fresh or dried leaves of ground ivy are used to make tea. Raw honey can be poured to add some flavor.
  • Tincture - Infuse freshly chopped ground ivy leaves in grain alcohol for 4 to 6 weeks. Strain the liquid and place it in a dark and dry place.
  • Decoction - Fresh or dried ground ivy leaves and flowers are simmered in water to make a decoction.
  • Salve - Fresh or Dried ground ivy leaves are used to make a salve.
  • Syrup - Fresh ground ivy leaves are simmered with water and honey to formulate a thick syrup.
  • Infused oil - Dried ground ivy leaves and olive oil are used to make ground ivy oil.