Ovens & Murray Advertiser - North East Regional Extra

YOUR GARDEN

- with SOPHIE

MULLEIN or Verbascum Thapsus (which sounds very Harry Potter) is a giant weed that can grow up to two metres in height when in flower.

The bright yellow flowers grow at the top of a stalk above the low growing rosette of fuzzy felt-like leaves.

Both the leaves and flowers can be used as herbal medicine, to make tincture and oil.

Mullein loves disturbed soil and as such grows wild in ditches, roadsides and burnt out or logged areas.

You can image that it would love growing locally around Myrtleford and the Alpine areas.

Each plant can produce around 175,000 seeds and these can remain dormant for hundreds of years.

Once the soil is disturbed, they produce their striking yellow flowers.

It is a weed, invasive and difficult to eradicate.

Once you find a patch you will have medicine making ingredient­s potentiall­y forever.

Tea from the leaves can be used to help with a dry spasmodic cough and infusions of the leaves can help regulate the bowels.

Traditiona­lly it was smoked to help with fever and cough.

When soaked in vinegar or alcohol the saturated leaves can form a poultice to treat infected wounds.

Making an oil, by infusing the flowers in olive oil and garlic creates a golden oil used for earaches.

The oil, once warmed helps soothe the pain and has antiseptic, antibacter­ial and analgesic properties.

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 ?? PHOTO: Shuttersto­ck ?? ◆ VERSATILE: Mullein might be a giant, invasive weed but it has numerous medicinal uses.
PHOTO: Shuttersto­ck ◆ VERSATILE: Mullein might be a giant, invasive weed but it has numerous medicinal uses.

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