Burdock

Latin Name
Arctium lappa

General Description
For several centuries, herbalists have prescribed burdock root to cure a wide range of illnesses. Today, some practitioners use burdock to treat urinary tract infections, arthritic conditions, external wounds and skin ulcers. This herb works best in conjunction with professional medical treatment. The root has brown bark and a white, spongy interior that hardens when dried. Burdock got its name from its tenacious burrs and from dock, the Old English word for "plant."

Target Ailments
Taken internally for:

Applied externally for:

Preparations
Over the counter:
Burdock is available as dried powder, slices of root and tinctures. You can find the fresh root in the vegetable sections of health food stores.

At home:
Decoction: 1 tsp. burdock root added to 3 cups water and boiled for 30 minutes. Up to 3 cups a day consumed to treat genital and urinary tract irritations.
Compress: A clean cloth soaked in burdock tea and placed it on the skin to speed healing of wounds and skin ulcers.
Combinations: Burdock can be mixed with yellow dock, red clover, or cleavers and taken orally for skin disorders. Consult an herbalist for more information.

Special Information