Botanical Name: Cimicifuga racemosa (syn. Actaea racemosa) | Family: Ranunculaceae
Common name(s): Black Cohosh, Rattleroot, Squawroot, Snakeroot, Bugbane
- Perennial; herbaceous | Zone 3-8 | 3-9 feet tall | Small white flowers in wand-like racemes from May through August
- Partial shade| Moist, rich soil | Grows in woods and shrubby areas
Harvest the root in Autumn
PREPARATION / DOSAGE
Decoction: Pour 1 cup boiling water over 1/2-1 teaspoons of the dried root and let steep for 10-15 minutes. Drink 3x/day.
Tincture: 2-4ml 3x/day
Constituents: Bitter glycosides, estrogenic principle, ranunculin (changes to anemonin when dried), tannin, resin, salicylic acid
Actions: [glossary]Alterative[/glossary], [glossary]antirheumatic[/glossary], [glossary]antispasmodic[/glossary], [glossary]diaphoretic[/glossary], [glossary]emmenagogue[/glossary], expectorant, sedative
Uses: Menstrual pain, menopausal symptoms, arthritis (and rheumatic issues), high blood pressure, tinnitis, asthma, whooping cough, nervousness, insomnia
Combinations: combine with equal parts skullcap, wood betony, passion flower, valerian, and half a part of cayenne pepper for menstrual pains. More combinations can bee found in “The Way of Herbs.”
Cautions: Best avoided by people with liver issues. It has a reputation of facilitating delivery, so only take a week before your due date.
Sweet, pungent, slightly bitter, cool
- The Way of Herbs, Michael Tierra
- Holistic Herbal, David Hoffmann
- Indian Herbology of North America
- Encyclopedia of Herbal Medicine, Andrew Chevallier
- Fine Gardening
- photo credit: Pixabay
I don’t have any experience with this plant but I do have the right growing conditions for it on my property. I may plant it, eventually, or maybe it will just show up!