An herb entry from the Ancient Herbs and Modern Herbs book by James K. Sayre, Copyright, 2001. All rights reserved.


Skullcap - Scutellaria lateriflora - family: Labiatae (Lamiaceae) (Mint Family).

This is a rhizome-based perennial plant that grows to about two and a half feet high. It favors growing in damp locations. It has toothed oval-to-lance-shaped leaves and each summer it produces small flowers that range in color from blue to pink to white. Traditional American folk use of leaves as a remedy for anxiety, depression, epilepsy, headaches, insomnia, nervousness, rabies. Modern European uses of leaves as a remedy for alcohol withdrawal, anxiety, depression, headache, insomnia, nervousness, premenstrual syndrome, rheumatism and sciatica. Modern American folk use of leaves as a remedy for stress. Note: side effects may include diarrhea or indigestion. Note: large doses are toxic and may cause headaches or a mental stupor. Note: do not use during pregnancy or while nursing. Listed in the United States Pharmacopoeias from 1860 to 1900. Native to eastern and central North America. Native to California. Cultivated as a medicinal herb and as an ornamental in North America.



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Web page last updated on 22 May 2003.