Burdock is an unassuming looking thistle, but it’s packed full of useful traits.
It’s kind of more of a weed than a plant that you would want in your garden. Still, it may be useful to know what it is useful for.
The Burdock is a plant that could be used as food in an emergency, by boiling the roots and stems several times. So keep that in mind the next time your starving in the wilderness! It is also an ingredient in some Asian cuisine.
The root, leaf and seeds are sometimes used as medicine. This is regarded as safe. Mixing with other herbal medicine isn’t recommended.
Fun Fact: The hook like fibers on the seeds of the Burdock inspired the inventor of Velcro.
- Perennial with 2 year lifespan.
- USDA Zone: Anywhere other than frozen tundra.
- Sun: Any.
- Soil: Any. Soft soil is recommended if you plan on harvesting the roots.
- Water use: Low.
- Height: Up to 6 feet.
- Spacing: It’s a weed. It doesn’t care.
- Hardiness: Invasively hardy.
- Season of Flowering
Potential Uses for roots, leaves and seeds:
Ground and applied:
- Dry skin
- Purify blood
- Increase urine flow
- Kill germs
- Reduce fever
- Common colds
- Helps Fight Cancer
- Gastrointestinal issues
- Joint pain
- Bladder Infections
- High blood pressure
- Liver Disease
- Increase Libedo
- HIV (Possibly)
Note that the list above is things people think it helps with, not proven fact.
Making Burdock Tea from fresh non-dried root:
Burdock tea is commonly made from the root of the plant.
It can be found in some health food stores but can also be made from home.
To make Burdock Tea from Burdock root:
- Select roots that are firm and not overly soft.
- Clean the outer brown skin off the root by scraping it with a knife or just wipe it clean if it is a younger root that isn’t brown.
- Chop the root on a cutting board or grate it up into small pieces.
- Add to water in a tea ball or by itself if you don’t mind chunky tea. Roughly 1 Tablespoon chopped burdock per 2 cups water.
- Bring water to a boil then lower heat to simmer for 10-30 minutes. For best results let the tea steep for 10-20 minutes.
Using Burdock in food and creating dried burdock tea:
This website does a better job than I could showing how to use burdock as a cooking ingredient and two different methods for making dried tea: http://slism.com/diet/3-burdock-root-recipes.html
Seeds. It spreads like crazy without aid.