HOUNDSTONGUE HERB CYNOGLOSSUM OFFICIANALE HOUNDSTOOTH GYPSY FLOWER DOGS TONGUE RATS AND MICE SEEDS $2.30 $2.10

VERY CLOSE TO COMFREY IT IS OFTEN USED AS AN ALTERNATIVE. THE HAIRY AND ROUGH LEAVES WERE SAID TO RESEMBLE A HOUNDS TONGUE AND IT WAS ONCE GIVEN AS A REMEDY FOR DOG BITES!

It prefers wet places and needs several weeks of very cold weather to germinate (which we can supply in the fridge) so although many countries have it on their weeds list, it won’t be able to manage that here in Australia! Which is why it is on the permitted species list.  Attractive to bees and beneficial insects, it was used in medieval times to cure madness. Comfrey and Houndstongue look very much the same however the leaves are wider on the Houndstongue and the seeds of the Houndstongue are produced in four nutlets with hairy prickles. Comfrey only has three nutlets and they are smooth.

From Wikipedia:

In the 1830s, houndstooth was known in France to be made into an emollient and diuretic for daily use in inflammatory diseases, especially of the urinary organs.[7] To prepare as a diuretic, the houndstooth leaves were mashed, and then boiled in water to extract oils, volatile organic compounds, and other chemical substances.[7] The mix could be sweetened with liquorice to create Ptisan of Dog’s-grass.[7] After decoction, the herbal tea was taken internally a cupful at a time.[7] In 1834, the Hospital of Paris provided a formula of 2/3 ss—J to Oij of water for houndstooth tea.[7] By the end of the 1830s, doctors in England were using houndstooth as an antiaphrodisiac to combat venereal excesses.[8]

Herbalists use the plant for piles, lung diseases, persistent coughs, baldness, sores, and ulcers but the effectiveness of all these uses is not supported by any scientific evidence.[9]

As a weed

In 1891, the U.S. state of Michigan identified houndstooth, along with flea-bane, rag weed, burdock, cockle-bur, and stickseed, as weeds in the state.[10]

Toxicity

Cynoglossum officinale contains tumorigenic pyrrolizidine alkaloids.[11] It is toxic to cows and is especially dangerous to pasture owners. Prickles can end up in the fur of animals, best to get it up off the ground in a pot.

Prepare:

Put seeds in some moist (not wet) compost in a ziploc bag, put them in the fridge on the normal shelf (not the crisper) for a few months and plant when they come out, doesn’t matter what month. Check often to see if seeds have germinated.

Sow

Plant sprouted seeds by holding onto the stem, not the root, place gently into the soil, keep damp. For best results, seeds are sown directly into the ground where required in the spring. Alternatively, sow in late winter/early spring in gentle warmth, 15-20 degrees C. Prick out into small 3 inch or 7 cm. pots and plant in final position when the plants are established. Germination can take some time, do not throw out your pots!

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Seed Count: 5
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