I see a lot on the web where Queen of the Meadow is being used interchangeably with Meadow Sweet. Even some of my herb books do this. For instance the famous Mrs. Grieves in A Modern Herbal does not appear to distinguish one from the other. There are many wanna be herbalist, but are not willing to do their homework before selling their products, and also not taking herbalism as seriously as they should. They just want to make that sale. Here is where knowing the Latin word comes in handy and helps us so that we don't make a serious mistake either on our own or when we purchase a certain herb from another herbalist.
In this blog, I'm going to give
the name of the herb,
it's Latin name and Family,
a list of other names the herb is known as;
a description of what the plant looks like,
what the leaves look like
what the flowers look like.
Also, I will give the growing situation that each plant thrives in,
and finally what each herb is used for.
The herbs are : QUEEN OF THE MEADOW; BONESET; MEADOW SWEET AND QUEEN OF THE PRAIRIES.
QUEEN OF THE MEADOW Latin name is Eupatorium Purpureum of the Aster Family
Queen of the Meadow is also known as Joe Pye weed, Gravel Root; Trumpet Weed and Purple Boneset.
QUEEN OF THE MEADOW grows to 7 feet tall, very graceful. The stem is rigid, generally hollow, tinged with purple above the nodes, bearing oblong lanceolate vanilla scented, roughish leaves, in whorls of 2 -5 leaves about 10 inches long. Flowers are pinkish purple, can be creamy white, but all I've ever seen here in North Carolina is pinkish purple. The flowers are arranged in clusters of 5 to 10 on very numerous dense terminal compound cormbs. Appearing late summer to mid autumn. Prefers rich calcerous woodland soils, either dry or moist.
QUEEN OF THE MEADOW use mainly the root and is used for tonic, stimulant, antilithic, renal or urinary calculi, gout and rheumatism. You drink this cold and one mouthful at a time and 1 cup during the entire day. Do not take this as a regular drink. Take one cup of tea only every two or three days and only for one week at a time, with about 3 weeks in between before taking another cup of tea. This is a very strong herb.
The flowers are used as a diuretic and tonic. The leaves help repel insects such as mosquitos and other flying insects. One could use the leaves mixed in candle wax to make an insect repellant candle for outdoor use.
BONESET Latin name is Eupatorium perfoliatum L compositae notice the difference, Perfoliatum is not the same as Purpureum. They are close relatives and share similar chemical constituents.
BONESET grows to 4 feet tall and has a pubescent stem which is stout and cylindrical, branched above, bearing lanceolate leaves united at the base around the stem; dark and shiny green above, cotton like beneath and fine toothed. Inflorescence of 10-16 small white or rarely, blue flowers on a dense corymbose cyme.( a flat topped cluster of flowers with the flower stalks proportionately longer lower down the stem. An inflorescence in which the primary axis bears a single terminal flower that develops first, the system being continued by the axes of secondary and higher orders each with a flower.)Appears in late summer to mid autumn; prefers open, marshy regions.
BONESET: use the flowers and is used for colds and fevers, and is taken as a hot infusion.
MEADOWSWEET Latin name is Filipendula ulmaria Meadow sweet leaves are compound with toothed leaflets that are green above, woolly white below. Stalks 4 -6 ft tall are topped with fluffy clusters of sweetly fragrant white flowers. Meadow sweet needs a damp, rich soil in partial shade in order grow well.
MEADOW SWEET is used for treating colds, dyspepsia, flatulence, indigestion, sore throat, It is from Meadow sweet that that salicylic acid was first discovered in 1839 and from which Aspirin was later synthesized. Meadow sweet is also used to reduce inflammation and to relieve cold and flu symptoms, including fever and pain.
QUEEN OF THE PRAIRES (Fillipendula rubra is of the Rose , Rosaceae family) The foliage is dark green pinnately compound leaves with jagged leaflets. Grows to a height of 6 to 8 feet. The flowers are fluffy clusters of pink, like pink cotton candy. Blooms for weeks in July or August. Prefers moist soil , likes full or part sun, prefers fertile, organic soil and steady moisture. Will not grow well in dry soil.
Part used is the roots as an astringent to stop bleeding, diarrhea or dysentery. Leaf is used as an antacid.
Notice the difference in 1) height 2) stem 3) the way the leaves are and look 5) the color of the flowers and 6) one has a single flower and the other has clusters of flowers