Verbascum thapsus. Scrophulariaceae
Found along waysides and on neglected land. Leaves are broad, grey and very downy, giving the plant one of its common names:”blanket herb.” The flowers are in tall spikes and are of yellow, rose-form. This is a famed old household remedy and a favorite of the American Indians. It has always been a standby remedy for lung ailments in cattle, another of its common names being “cow lungwort.” It is equally good for humans in this respect. The leaves and flowers are used. The flowers must be stored in tin containers for they turn black in light, once off the plant. Yet another name is “candle light,” the down being used once as wicks.
Valued for its effect on the chest area. Treatment oaf cough, pneumonia, pleurisy, bronchitis, tuberculosis, asthma (internally and as an inhalant). Also a remedy for bleeding from the mouth, nose lungs, bowels. Treatment of dropsy, all bowel complaints, and hay fever. A tea of the flowers will promote sleep and soothe headaches.
Make hot fomentations of a cloth wrung out in a brew of the leaves or flowers, and apply to mumps, swollen glands, stiff neck, and the throat for inflamed tonsils. Some vinegar can be added to the fomentation with advantage. Use the Standard Brew as an application for warts.
Of a Standard Brew of the leaves and/or flower, a small cupful night and morning. In treatment of dysentery, and bleeding from the bowels, boil a teaspoon of mullein leaves to one cup of new milk, add honey, nutmeg, cinnamon, and take two tablespoons of this drink after each bowel movement, or at least three times daily. For asthma, use an old kettle, place within a heaped tablespoonful of leaves, cut fine, pour on to this some boiling water, and inhale the steam through the spout (keeping the head beneath a towel).This same inhalation can be used for hay fever, congestion of the nose, and all sinus troubles.