American Mistletoe, Cynoglossum grande, Cynoglossum officinale, edible Hound's Tongue, False Mistletoe, field craft, field medicine, Gypsy Flower, home remedies, Hound's Tongue, increase in uterine contractions, increase systolic blood pressure, militia supply, mistletoe hemostat, Oak MIstletoe, Pacific Hound's Tongue, Phoradendron californicum, Phoradendron juniperinum, Phoradendron leucarpum, Phoradendron villosum, poultice for burns, treat bleeding, treat burns, treat connective tissues, treat migraine headaches, treat minor injuries, treat nervous tension, treat stomach aches, treat tumors, treat venereal diseases, treat venereal warts, treat wounds, treatment for burns, treatment for clotting wounds, treatment for hemorrhoids, treatment of coughs, treatment of insomnia
Medical disclaimer: always check with a physician before consuming wild plants, and make positive identification in the field using a good source such as Medicinal Plants of the Mountain West. Michael Moore also has a glossary of medical terms in his books, and maps in later editions. )
(Blog Masters Note: All past posts for Wild Edible And Medicinal Plants are now located in a drop-down search below comments.)
Common Name: Hound’s Tongue, Gypsy Flower
Latin Name: Cynoglossum grande, C. officinale
Range: http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=CYGR Washington, Oregon and California (Cynoglossum grande)
http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=cyof All of the lower 48 States except Oklahoma, Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Florida; In Canada; British Columbia to Quebec, plus New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. (Cynoglossum officinale)
Photos : (Click on Latin name after common name )
Common Name: Pacific Hound’s Tongue (Cynoglossum grande)
Appearance and Habitat: Several smooth stems with large, ovate, long-stalked leaves mostly near base and loose clusters of purple or blue flowers on branches at top. The common name refers to the shape of the broad leaves. Native Americans used preparations from the root to treat burns and stomachaches. There are several species, all with blue to purple or maroon flowers and large rough nutlets that stick to clothing.(1) A perennial found West of the Cascades and east along the Columbia River Gorge in Washington; southern British Columbia to southern California in woods at low elevations.
Leaves alternate, entire, long-petiolate, confined to the lower half of the stem; leaf blade ovate to elliptic, 8-18 cm. long and 3-11 cm. wide, broadly rounded to shallowly cordate at the base, the lower surface with some short, stiff hairs. The flowers are inflorescence a mixed panicle, opening and elongating with age;calyx 5-lobed, deeply cleft; corolla blue or violet, with a slender tube and abrupt spreading limb, the limb 1-1.5 cm. wide; appendages in the throat of the corolla exerted, with a shallow notch. The fruits are nutlets 4, obovoid-globose, nearly 1 cm. long, spreading, free from the style, with prickles on the outer half.(2) Woods in western N. America – British Columbia to California. A perennial growing to 0.8 m (2ft 7in). It is hardy to zone 8. It is in flower from Apr to May.(3)
Edible Uses:Root – cooked.(5)
Medicinal Uses :The grated root has been used as a dressing on inflamed burns and scalds. The root has been used in the treatment of stomach aches and venereal diseases.(6)
Foot Notes: (1)http://www.wildflower.org/plants/result.php?id_plant=CYGR
Foot Notes: (2)http://biology.burke.washington.edu/herbarium/imagecollection.php?Genus=Cynoglossum&Species=grande
Foot Notes: ( 3, 4, 5, 6 )http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Cynoglossum+grande
Common Name: Hound’s Tongue, Gypsy Flower (Cynoglossum officinale)
Appearance and Habitat: A biennial introduced from Eurasia. Distribution mucn of the United States. A noxious weed of roadsides and disturbed areas. Coarse, leafy biennial, the single stem 3-12 dm. tall, covered with long, soft hairs throughout. Lowermost leaves oblanceolate, tapering to the petiole, 1-3 dm. long and 2-5 cm. wide; other leaves sessile, oblong or lanceolate, numerous, gradually reduced upward. Flowers: Inflorescence of numerous false racemes in the upper leaf axils or terminating short axillary branches, the pedicels curved and spreading; sepals 5-lobed, deeply cleft, 5-8 mm. long, the lobes broad and blunt; corolla dull reddish-purple, with a slender tube and abrupt spreading limb, the limb about 1 cm. wide; appendages in the throat of the corolla exerted, broadly rounded. Fruits: Nutlets 4, ovoid, 5-7 mm. long, attached to the style.(1) Dry grassy areas and the edges of woods, often near the sea, on sand, gravel, chalk or limestone soils. Europe, including Britain, though absent from the extreme north and rare in south, east to Asia. A biennial / perennial growing to 0.8 m (2ft 7in) by 0.5 m (1ft 8in). It is hardy to zone 6. It is in flower from Jun to August, and the seeds ripen from Aug to September.(2)
Warnings: Hound’s Tongue contains alkaloids that can cause cancer when the plant is consumed in large quantities. The plant is also said to be slightly poisonous, there are no reported cases of human poisoning but there are some cases of cattle being poisoned. The plant has a disagreeable odor and taste so seldom eaten by animals. Contact with the plant can cause dermatitis in sensitive people.(3)
Edible Uses:Young leaves – raw or cooked. A disagreeable odour and taste.(4)
Medicinal Uses :Hound’s tongue has a long history of use as a medicinal herb, though it is rarely used in modern herbalism. The leaves contain allantoin, a highly effective agent that speeds up the healing process in the body. Caution should be applied, however, since narcotic effects result from large doses taken internally and the plant is potentially carcinogenic (though it has also been used in the treatment of cancer). The leaves and roots are analgesic, antihaemorrhoidal, antispasmodic, astringent, digestive, emollient and slightly narcotic. The plant contains the alkaloids cynoglossine and consolidin, which are used medicinally to relieve pain. They depress the central nervous system and are also potentially carcinogenic. The plant has been used internally in the treatment of coughs and diarrhoea, though it is now mainly used externally as a poultice on piles, wounds, minor injuries, bites and ulcers. The root is harvested at the end of spring of the plants second year. Another report says that it is best harvested in the autumn and dried for later use. The leaves and flowering shoots are harvested as the plant comes into flower and are dried for later use. The plant has a wide antitumour reputation for cancers of various types. A homeopathic remedy is made from the roots. It is very effective in the treatment of insomnia.(5)
Foot Notes: (1)http://biology.burke.washington.edu/herbarium/imagecollection.php?Genus=Cynoglossum&Species=officinale
Foot Notes: (2, 3, 4, 5) http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Cynoglossum+officinale
Appearance and Habitat: This biennial, from Europe, can be mistaken for Mullein, which is much hairy in texture than Hound’s Tongue. In the first year it forms rosettes of leaves, in the second year it forms a stem densely packed with flowers. The flowers are lavender to purple and mature into little burred seeds that are oval-triangular in shape. The root is light in color. The plant is common in New Mexico and Colorado, especially near the border of New Mexico, then north to cover most of Wyoming and Montana. It also grows along the northern mountains in Arizona, southern and northern Idaho, along the coast in Washington and Oregon and the northern Sierra Nevada range in California. It prefers shaded areas above 6,000 feet, but sometimes can be encountered as high as 9,500 feet in the forests around campgrounds around grazing areas.
Medicinal Uses : Collect the plant and roots in the summer when in bloom. For the upper plant, ties in small bundles (1/2 inch) and place in a shady area that has a breeze to dry the herb. For the root, split it lengthwise into small sections and place it in a cheese cloth fold hung in the shade to dry. The root makes an excellent poultice for burns, or insect bites. A bath in a strong tea made from both the plant and root, helps with hemorrhoids, venereal warts, will diminish inflammation and help connective tissue repair below the skin.
Medicinal Plants of the Mountain West 2nd Edition, by Michael Moore, pages 137-139, Publisher: Museum of New Mexico Press, Copyright 2003, ISBN 0-89013-454-5
Common Name: Mistletoe, American Mistletoe, False Mistletoe
Latin Name: Phoradendron californicum, P. juniperinum, P. leucrapum, P. villosum
Range:http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=PHCA8 California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona and New Mexico. (Phoradendron californicum)
http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=PHJU California, Nevada, Utah, Oregon, Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado and Texas. (Phoradendron juniperinum)
http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=phle14 All States east of the Mississippi R., except Wisconsin, Michigan and states north of New York; plus Missouri, Arkansas, Louisiana, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas and New Mexico. (Phoradendron leucarpum)
http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=PHVI9 California and Oregon. (Phoradendron villosum)
Photos: Phoradendron californicum Mesquite Mistletoe, Phoradendron juniperinum, Juniper Mistletoe Phoradendron leucarpum Oak Mistletoe and Phoradendron villosum Pacific Mistletoe
Common Name: False Mistletoe, Oak MIstletoe
Appearance and Habitat: Semi-parasitic shrub with short, interrupted, axillary clusters of tiny yellow flowers on smooth, green, jointed stems. This is the common Mistletoe hung at Christmastime. The genus name derives from the Greek phor a thief, and dendron tree, and refers to their getting at least some nourishment from the trees on which they grow. The fruits are covered with a sticky substance poisonous to man, but relished by such birds as cedar waxwings and bluebirds. The birds spread the seeds through their droppings and by wiping their beaks on branches, where a new plant may become established. The small, northern Dwarf Mistletoe (Arceuthobium pusillum), has short yellow-green stems 1 (2.5 cm) long, with leaves reduced to thin brown scales. This plant occurs only on evergreens, especially spruce, and is found in northern bogs south to New Jersey and Pennsylvania, and west to Michigan.(1) A parasite growing on deciduous trees, especially Acer rubrum and Nyssa spp. In N. America – New Jersey to Florida, west to Illinois and Texas. An evergreen srub growing to 1 m (3ft 3in) by 1 m (3ft 3in) at a slow rate. It is hardy to zone 6. It is in leaf 12-Jan It is in flower from Feb to April, and the seeds ripen from Nov to December.(2)
Warnings: There are recorded cases of the berries poisoning people. Contact with the plant can cause dermatitis in some people.(3)
Medicinal Uses :A tea made from the leaves is said to procure abortions and also to prevent conception. It causes an increase in uterine contractions and helps to stop bleeding after parturition. When injected into the blood it increases blood pressure.(5)
Foot Notes: (1)http://www.wildflower.org/plants/result.php?id_plant=PHLE14
Foot Notes: (2, 3, 4, 5) http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Phoradendron+leucarpum
(Now for Michael Moore who covers all.)
Appearance and Habitat: Mistletoe is a parasitic plant that grows on Oak, Juniper, Mesquite, Catclaw and most deciduous trees. They have opposing leaves or scales, small seeds inside a gluey outer cover. The foliage is either lighter or darker than the host plant, and either oval and succulent or scales . It grows as a large clump of branches, that usually droops at juncture of limbs. Unlike Dodder, it has chlorophyll, but used the host plant for water. In time, it will kill large sections or the entire host.
Warnings: Shouldn’t be used by people with hypertension, blood pressure irregularities, with High Blood Pressure medications, serotonin medications or during pregnany. Some folks don’t mix well with Mistletoe, especially if it isn’t dried.
Medicinal Uses : Collect the plant at anytime chopping into pieces and drying in the shade using a hanging pocket of cheese cloth. This is not the European Mistletoe, but shares some medical value, it relaxes nervous tension and minor spasms. It will also increase systolic blood pressure. It is a strong vasoconstrictor, meaning it will help reduce bleeding and help with clotting. It can be used as a first aid when bleeding by eating small pieces, fresh, until medical help arrives. It seems to help with migraine headaches. Pay attention to the warnings and start off slow with a 1/2 teaspoon in tea, if it helps, the dose can be upped to 1 teaspoon in tea.
Medicinal Plants of the Mountain West 2nd Edition, by Michael Moore, pages 164-165, Publisher: Museum of New Mexico Press, Copyright 2003, ISBN 0-89013-454-5