Plantain Leaf / Plantago species
Habitat and Growing Conditions: grows everywhere as a weed, especially disturbed soil.
Pertinent Information: Diuretic, alterative, anti-inflammatory, aperient. Leaves and seeds. Gather during summer flowering. Used for urinary tract infections, stings, bites, wounds. The aucubin helps the secretion of uric acid from the kidneys. Used internally for all inflammation and the leaves are applied externally for bites and stings. For a serious venomous bite a poultice is made and a tea is taken every half hour. Soothes inflamed and sore membranes-- great for coughs and mild bronchitis. “Slows all manner of flowings.”
Personal Experience: I made a salve with plantain and comfrey that has been great at healing various mild skin issues. I have also chewed a plantain leaf and stuck it on a splinter to draw it out. The tea made of plantain has a rich green taste.
References: Holistic Herbal, David Hoffman, 224; The Way of Herbs, Michael Tierra, 179-180; Back to Eden, Jethro Kloss, 168-169