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DISCLAIMER: These pages are presented solely as a source of INFORMATION and ENTERTAINMENT and to provide stern warnings against use where appropriate. No claims are made for the efficacy of any herb nor for any historical herbal treatment. In no way can the information provided here take the place of the standard, legal, medical practice of any country. Additionally, some of these plants are extremely toxic and should be used only by licensed professionals who have the means to process them properly into appropriate pharmaceuticals. One final note: many plants were used for a wide range of illnesses in the past, but be aware that many of the historical uses have proven to be ineffective for the problems to which they were applied.

aka Balsam resin, Leaf cup, Uvedalia, Yellow Leaf Cup
(Polymnia uvedalia)

Tall (3 to 6 feet) branching plant native to the United States from New York to Missouri and southward. A member of the Aster family found growing in rich soil in ravines and at the edges of woods. Root is grayish-brown and furrowed, also odorless with a salty and slightly bitter taste, (looks like a small sweet potato, but with a darker skin); stem bark is thin and brittle and easily scales off; leaves are large being the size of a man's hand, but shaped like a bear's foot.


Anodyne, laxative, stimulative, alterative.
Was used for enlargement of the spleen in cases of malaria; also used for swollen glands and dyspepsia caused by the spleen.
Was used externally to stimulate growth of hair and was once a major ingredient in many American hair ointments and lotions.
Was used for inflammation of the breast (mammitis); also for enlarged cervical nodules (said to break up accumulations).
Was used as an alterative in cases of scrofula; also used in chronic cases of rheumatism.
For swollen glands, the root has been simmered in coconut oil or other salve base (use top of double boiler) and applied to swollen area; this was followed up with a flannel cloth covering the area with a hot water bottle held over it.
The ointment was also used as a scalp massage as a hair tonic.

!All others buy commercial preparations and follow directions carefully!
FLUID EXTRACT = 15 to 60 minims
POWDERED ROOT = 1 tsp granulated root to 1 cup of boiling water; steep 15 to 20 minutes; 1 cup taken during the day, a mouthful at a time.
TINCTURE of UVEDALIA = 10 to 25 drops 3 times daily

©2002 by Ernestina Parziale, CH