Erect, downy, and slightly aromatic perennial growing to 3 ft (1 m). Has paired leaves, green above and silvery-green beneath, and small 5-petaled yellow flowers growing on terminal spikes.
Habitat & Cultivation
Agrimony is a native European herb commonly found in marshes, wet meadows, and open areas. It is harvested when in flower in summer.
Agrimony contains tannins, coumarins, flavonoids (including luteolin, a volatile oil), and polysaccharides.
History & Folklore
The species name Eupatoria has regal associations. Mithridates Eupator (d. 63 BCE), King of Pontus in northern Turkey, was said to have had a profound knowledge of plant lore and antidotes to poisons.
Medicinal Actions & Uses
Agrimony has long been used by herbalists to heal wounds because it staunches bleeding and encourages clot formation. An astringent and mild bitter, it is also a helpful remedy for diarrhea and a gentle tonic for digestion as a whole. Combined with other herbs such as cornsilk (Zea mays), it is a valuable remedy for cystitis and urinary incontinence, and has also been used for kidney stones, sore throats, hoarseness, rheumatism, and osteoarthritis.
Agrimony’s blood-staunching and anti-inflammatory properties have been established by experiments in China.
Xian he cao (A. pilosa) is used in China for comparable conditions.