Burdock is an extremely easy herb to grow. Coupled with the fact that it is an incredibly healthy herb makes it one of my favorites to have in any medicinal herb garden. It is also a beautiful plant, which is why it is our featured herb! The root is the most commonly used part of the plant, the stems can also be used to make an amazing tincture or tonic for acne or eczema. It is also amazing in a healthy stir fry! This is a resilient plant once established as its natural habitat are roadsides & wastelands. Burdock plants grow as large as 5 feet & the leaves grow very large as well.
The roots, seeds, stems & leaves of the burdock plant are used medicinally! Burdock root is most often used to cleanse the body of toxins. It is also helpful to increase urine output & it is said to enhance liver functions. Even the seeds are anti-inflammatory. The stalk can be peeled & grilled or added to stir-fry. Spiritually it was historically used for healing and protection. Physicians during the 1800’s treated urinary tract infections, kidney problems, painful urination, skin infections & arthritis with burdock. Cherokee Indians used burdock extensively. The stalks can be peeled & eaten raw & the taste has been likened to celery.
The preferred method for taking burdock or any root medicine is tincture. You can add a few drops of tincture to water or juice. Burdock root can also be dried & ground down to a powder & encapsulated. Most roots are bitter & aren’t taken as a tea. Burdock is an amazing detoxifying herb in Chinese or Western herbal medicine. Burdock can also be used externally as a skin wash for infections or rashes. You can make a poultice for boils or abscesses. The benefits for inflammation are plentiful. With so many medicinal properties burdock is a dynamic herb!