Butterbur - A giant leafed plant with medicinal uses

A fast growing, easy to grow plant with very large leaves. Unfortunately, Butterbur is toxic until it has been processed to remove the toxin.

butterbur leafThe butterbur plant is a very beautiful plant with enormous leaves (up to 12 inches across) and bright pink flowers.

Even though tea and herbal supplements  are  made from butter bur root, it  has  to be treated to remove the toxins, as the entire plant is toxic!

It is  a fast growing  plant and it will crowd out smaller plants, so it is a good idea to keep it contained in a large container. Because of it’s dominating features it is considered invasive.

The butterbur plant got it’s name because the early settlers used to wrap their butter in the large leaves to keep it from melting!

It is found naturally in moist areas such as marshes, next to streams, or in ditches.

Specifications:

  • USDA Zone: Zones 4-9
  • Annual or Perennial: Perennial
  • Sun: Prefers part sun. Will tolerate full sun if adequately watered.
  • Soil: Sandy, loamy or clay
  • Water requirement: Heavy
  • Height: Up to 9 feet tall
  • Spacing: Not required
  • Hardiness: Quite hardy. Semi-frost resistant. Semi-heat resistant.
  • Can be grown in a large pot.
  • Season of Flowering: Spring
  • Toxic until processed

Potential Uses:

Extracts from the roots:

  • Pain reliever
  • Fever reducer
  • Cough and congestion
  • Migraine headaches
  • Allergy symptoms.
  • Treat skin ulcers and wounds
  • Anti-inflammatory

Toxicity:

Toxic until processed!

Propagation:

Dividing rhizomes.

You can break up the root ball into multiple plants.