Horehound

Horehound

m.vulgare

Horehound is an expectorant that helps relive mucus build up from a cough or bronchitis. This herb will also help with digestion and stomach issues.

  • Plant type: Perennial
  • Other names: White Horehound
  • Medicinal: Yes
  • Culinary: No
  • Ceremonial: No
  • Parts Used: Flowers and Leaves
  • Side Effects: Do not use in pregnancy
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About Horehound

Horehound is yet another property of the insanely popular mint family Lamiaceae. This flowering plant can attain a height of not more than 20 inches. It is readily acknowledged by long yet crinkled grey leaves with soft wool. Horehound flowers are utterly beautiful due to their pure white colors that appear in cluster form.

Horehound is an herbaceous perennial which proffers balsamic odor and very bitter taste that tends to stay a little longer than our endurance. All the parts of this magical plant are cheered due to their medicinal benefits.

Anciently, horehound was considered as an anti-magic herb due to its protective nature against witchcraft. It was customarily called as ‘Seed of Horus’ and ‘the Bull’s Blood’ by the well-reputed Egyptian priests.

Medicinally, the horehound is used to treat gastrointestinal tract problems, such as indigestion, loss of appetite, flatulence, bloating, ulcer, diarrhea, and constipation. Horehound also proves to be fruitful for respiratory tract disorder including asthma, bronchitis, tuberculosis, and whooping cough.

All the pharmacological activities of the magical horehound are attributed to the active phytochemicals found in it like alkaloids, flavonoids, marrubiin, and other essential volatile oils.

Growing

Horehound should be planted three weeks before the last frost date. This magical plant can be started through seeds, divisions, or cuttings. It requires full sun exposure and well-drained soil to show robust growth.

Horehound can be planted both indoors and outdoors. Mostly, horehound is planted indoors, in a pot, due to its overly invasive nature. If it is planted outdoors, then it is made sure that it gets the space it needs without interrupting any other plant’s space and growth.

The soil should be shoveled, preferably raked to eradicate the debris and rocks. The seeds of horehound take way too long to germinate so it is better to start up the plantation with cuttings or divisions. The seeds are quite light weighted and thin, so they need to be lightly sown in the soil, not too deeply, as they require sunlight to sprout.

The horehound seeds take around 14 to 21 days to germinate. After germination, they grow quickly upon receiving water and optimum sunlight.

The horehound starts blooming from midsummer, during which it invites pollinating insects to carry out the process of pollination. After the fertilization, small seed pods emerge which have tiny, light weighed seeds that get propagated by air to reseed and start the process of its growth again.

Harvesting

The leaves and flowers of horehound are advised to be collected in midsummer or when the plant is at its peak of blooming.

Horehound is planted and harvested preferably for its highly prized flowers and leaves which can be pruned with the help of a sharp pair of shears.

The leaves and flowers of this magical herb, are dried indoors. They should not be dried in direct sunlight. When they seem crisp to touch, the flowers and leaves are crumpled and stored in an airtight container.

Usage

Horehound’s magic knows no bound. Be it protection from the witchcraft or diseases like tuberculosis, horehound surely knows how to serve the mortals in the best possible way.

  • Tincture - Infuse fresh or dried chopped horehound flowers and leaves in grain alcohol for 4 to 6 weeks. Strain the liquid and place it in a dark and dry place.
  • Tea - Dried horehound leaves are steeped for 10 to 15 minutes in hot boiling water to make the perfect magical horehound tea.
  • Decoction - Dried horehound leaves and flowers are simmered for a few minutes to make horehound decoction.
  • Salve - Horehound infused olive oil is used in making the salve.
  • Syrup - Dried horehound leaves are rolled to boil with honey and water solution to form horehound cough syrup.
  • Infused oil - Dried horehound leaves are infused with organic olive oil to formulate horehound oil.