Discovering Chickweed and its Benefits
Chickweed is a versatile plant that grows in early spring or late summer. It’s a perennial and annual plant, and is often considered a weed. This hearty plant grows in patches, but isn’t a tight growth like a ground cover. While it’s native to Europe, it’s found growing throughout the United States. The leaves, stems and flowers are usable. There are many benefits when used as medicine and food.
Oval shaped leaves that come to a point
Leaves grow directly across from each other
Small, white five petal flower that looks similar to a carnation
Chickweed is nutritionally dense. It contains ascorbic-acid, beta-carotene, calcium, magnesium, niacin, potassium, riboflavin, selenium, thiamin, zinc, and copper. It has a mild tastes comparable to corn silk. Add it raw to salads or sandwiches like you would sprouts. Use as a substitute for spinach in smoothies, pestos, soups and other recipes.
Chickweed has several medicinal uses. When ingested in a tea or tincture its used to treat minor digestive and intestinal issues, and it supports the kidneys as a mild diuretic. Topically
as a salve, serum or poultice it’s used as an anti-inflammatory or pain reliever. Its most widely known for treating skin ailments. Its cool, dry component makes it perfect for easing eczema, rashes, minor scratches and burns.
Whether you eat it, drink it, or make infused oil with it, chickweed is one highly versatile plant. At Earthganics, we use it in our Eczema Relief Herbal Nectar. Keep an eye out for chickweed next time you’re outside and see if you can spot it.