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Pellitory

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  • Botanical: Anacyclus pyrethrum
  • Family: Asteraceae or Compositae
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Pellitory

Botanical

Anacyclus pyrethrum

Family

Asteraceae or Compositae

Known as

Spanish Chamomile, Mount Atlas Daisy, Mehrjähriger Bertram,

Old Use

medical

Collection Times

autumn

Parts Used

roots

Medicinal

neuralgia, neuritis, sore throat, toothache

Infection & Inflammation

toothache

Mind & Nerves

neuralgia

Respiratory System

bronchitis, catarrh, cough

Description

This perennial plant, in habit and appearance like the chamomile, has stems that lie on the ground for part of their length, before rising erect. Each bears one large flower, the disk being yellow and the rays white, tinged with purple beneath. The leaves are smooth, alternate, and pinnate, with deeply-cut segments.

The root is almost cylindrical, very slightly twisted and tapering and often crowned with a tuft of grey hairs. Externally it is brown and wrinkled, with bright black spots. The fracture is short, and the transverse section, magnified, presents a beautiful radiate structure and many oleoresin glands. The taste is pungent and odour slight.

Properties & Uses

The root is a pungent acrid herb that stimulates the salivary glands and irritates the tissues, thereby increasing blood flow to the area. It is used externally to treat toothache, facial neuralgia and chronic catarrh. A gargle is used to soothe sore throats. The root is harvested in the autumn and dried for later use. In Ayurvedic medicine the root is considered to be tonic and is used in the treatment of paralysis and epilepsy. The diluted essential oil in the root is used in mouthwashes and to treat toothaches. This oil should not be used internally, except under professional supervision

Cautions

None known

Distribution

It is found in North Africa, elsewhere in the Mediterranean region, in the Himalayas, in North India, and in Arabian countries

Constituents

Analysis has shown a brown, resinous, acrid substance, insoluble in potassium hydroxide and probably containing pelletonin, two oils soluble in potassium hydroxide - one dark brown and acrid, the other yellow - tannin, gum, potassium sulphate and carbonate, potassium chloride, calcium phosphate and carbonate, silica, alumina, lignin, etc.

An alkaloid, Pyrethrine, yielding pyrethric acid, is stated to be the active principle.

For educational purposes only This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.