MoonDragon's Health & Wellness
"For Informational Use Only"
For more detailed information contact your health care provider
about options that may be available for your specific situation.
WOODRUFF HERBAL DESCRIPTION
Woodruff is also known as Sweet Woodruff and Galium Odoratum.
Woodruff is a perennial plant of the family Rubiaceae that makes an excellent ground cover for shady locations. When dried, sweet woodruff exudes a very pleasant smell and is used to add fragrance to sweet dishes and liqueurs. About 850 A.D., Benedictine monks created a wine - still used to celebrate May Day - that was flavored with sweet woodruff.
Today, we know that this herb's fresh distinctive scent is due to its coumarin glycosides. Other active components are bitter principles, tannins and acids. This plant contains coumarins, flavonoids, vitamins A, C and K, minerals iron, silica, sodium and potassium, acids, and asperulin. Sweet Woodruff has tonic, diuretic, antispasmodic, and anti-inflammatory properties.
The dried herb is used in a calming tea for its nerve-strengthening, antispasmodic and analgesic properties. The tea offers mild pain relief and spurs the metabolism, as well.
A member of the madder family, this small (4 to 8 inches tall), shade-loving plant is related to coffee and henna. The fresh plant tastes slightly bitter and has no odor, but when crushed or wilted it releases a sweet scent similar to that of fresh hay.
An easy-to-grow, rapidly spreading plant, sweet woodruff has fine, tangled, branching roots that send out low, creeping runners. It has a shiny four-sided stem, with deciduous leaves that grow in a star-shaped pattern. When it blossoms, sweet woodruff puts forth small, funnel-shaped white flowers. The leaves change color as they dry, developing an aroma variously described as reminiscent of vanilla or newly mowed hay.
Sweet woodruff thrives in locations that get partial-to-full shade. It requires very loose, moist soil with high humus content. In the garden, sweet woodruff must have soil conditions similar to those found in the forest, so improve the soil with plenty of leaf mulch and compost. This plant should not be hoed as it grows, because that can damage the runners. Immediately pluck out any weeds that appear. Sweet woodruff requires regular watering. To protect the plant from extreme cold, be sure to cover it well from extreme cold, be sure to cover it well with leaves before winter. It grows to heights of 8 to 12 inches, depending upon conditions.
Sweet woodruff should not be picked during its first year. In the second year, pick the entire herb in May or June, just before it blossoms. Gather the herb, which is nearly odorless until dehydrated, then hang in bunches in a shady, well-ventilated place to dry. You can also spread out the herb loosely and turn it occasionally until it dries. Store dried sweet woodruff in airtight jars.
CULTIVATION & PROPAGATION
You can find young sweet-woodruff plants or seeds at nurseries and herb suppliers. If conditions are good, the plant multiplies quickly, forming a thick, grassy mat. It does best as a ground cover, beneath bushes or trees. Sweet woodruff's root system needs a great deal of room, so it is not a suitable plant for growing in a container.
1. Sweet woodruff seeds require frost to germinate. Hoe a shallow layer of soil in the fall and scatter the seeds. Use only seeds that are fresh and mature. Cover them lightly with soil and rotted leaves.
2. In March, remove the covering of leaves and replace it with fir branches.
3. In mid-May, remove the branches. Pull up any weeds that are sprouting, and be sure the soil remains loose. Sweet woodruff is quite sensitive to dryness, so it must always be kept moist. Do not harvest the herb the first year, because that will weaken the plant's growth.
Woodruff is propagated using its low, creeping root runners. In the spring, dig up runners that are about 3 inches long and have undamaged roots. Replant them in a shady location and water them fairly well the first several days to help keep the runners moist. However, be sure not to overwater them.
SWEET WOODRUFF HISTORY
Woodruff is native to most of Europe and the Middle East. It is found predominantly in shady, deciduous forests, where it grows in dense clusters. Woodruff is also cultivated in gardens as a medicinal plant.
Sweet Woodruff is a perennial with square stems and small white funnel-shaped flowers that bloom in loose clusters. As it dries, the sweet hay scent of the flower increases. It grows abundantly in Germany and is used in make May wine which the Germans drink as a spring tonic and as a salute to the new season. Sweet Woodruff gives the milk of cows a fragrant smell, but when it becomes wet it rots and becomes moldy, producing an anticoagulant which can cause hemorrhaging in cattle.
WOODRUFF USES, HEALTH BENEFITS & SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE
Only the above-ground portion of the plant is used in natural medicine. It should be harvested just before or just as it starts to flower. The herb is used mainly as a mild tranquilizer for treating nervousness and sleep disorders, such as insomnia.
Like Lavender, Sweet Woodruff can be used as an insect repellent, to help keep moths and other pests away from woolens and linens. Fill small cotton bags with dried woodruff and lavender flowers and place several of them in each closet.
While sweet woodruff was once sewn into cotton bags and hung in closets to prevent clothes from becoming musty, it also was a popular diuretic with liver-stimulating properties, according to medieval herb books. Today, a tonic made with woodruff and white wine is thought to strengthen and inviborate the heart and gladden the spirits.
Woodruff has been used both internally as a tea and topically as a compress for varicose veins and thrombophlebitis and helps to improve circulation. The fresh leaves are used as a dressing for wounds and cuts.
An anti-inflammatory and antispasmodic, it soothes intestinal discomfort, especially abdominal cramps, as well as headaches and migraines. It has also been valued as a treatment for liver disease and kidney stones and as a strengthener for the heart. A decoction of the leaves is used as a digestive aid, laxative, and for treating liver disorders. Make sweet woodruff tea by pouring 1 cup of boiling water over 1 teaspoon of crushed, dried herb. Steep for 10 minutes and strain. The herb can also be used to impart a distinct aroma to fruit juices, punches, jellies and potpourris.
METHODS OF ADMINISTRATION Curative Tea
Pour 1 cup of boiling water over 1 rounded teaspoon of dried Sweet Woodruff. Steep for 5 minutes and strain. Drink 2 to 3 cups a day, preferably unsweetened.
Steep 2 teaspoons of dried Woodruff in 1 cup of cold water for 8 hours; strain. Drink 1 to 2 cups every day to strengthen the heart.
Add no more than 1/4 teaspoon of fresh, slightly wilted Woodruff to 1 quart of dry, slightly sweet white wine. The herb is more aromatic when slightly wilted. Let the punch sit for a few hours then strain and serve chilled.
To combat insomnia, take 1/2 teaspoon powdered Woodruff mixed with honey or fruit puree 30 minutes before bedtime.
Grind the fresh herb with a mortar and pestle. Spread it on a cloth, fold the cloth up and apply it to the forehead. Caution: Do not let the plant pulp touch the skin!
Potpourri & Sachets
To encourage sleep, make a woodruff pillow. To add a fresh scent to a room, display a bowl of the dried herbs. Or, sweeten a closet with an herb sack.
WOODRUFF DOSAGE INFORMATION
Sweet woodruff comes in various forms and is an ingredient in many products. For best results, read and follow product label directions.
Adults (18 years and older): There is no proven safe or effective dose of sweet woodruff. Nonetheless, a tea of sweet woodruff made by pouring 3 cups of boiled water over herb (1 ounce of dry herb or 1/2 ounce of fresh herb) and letting the tea steep for 10 minutes has been used. Tinctures of sweet woodruff made by using 8 ounces of dried herb mixed with 1/2 cup of ethyl alcohol and 4 cups of water have also been taken. Vodka, brandy or other commercially prepared alcoholic solution can be used as a liquid extract. A general tincture can be made by adding 100 proof (50 percent alcohol: 50 percent water) to the dried herb. No additional water is needed to dilute the solution.
You should read product labels carefully, and discuss all therapies with a qualified healthcare provider.
WOODRUFF SAFETY, CAUTIONS & INTERACTION INFORMATION
Sweet Woodruff is generally regarded as safe. However, if you are on anticoagulants or have serious liver or kidney disease, it is best to seek the advice of your health care provider before using sweet woodruff for the treatment of your condition.
Safety in young children and pregnant or nursing women is not known. Do not use it if you are pregnant or taking conventional medication for circulatory problems.
In large doses, the herb may cause liver damage and may cause internal bleeding. Use only the advised dosages.
WOODRUFF HERBAL & RELATED PRODUCTS
QUALITY SUPPLIES & PRODUCTS
FTC Advertising & Affilate Disclosure: This website has an affiliate relationship with certain merchants selling products and we recieve commissions from those sales to help support this website. Any products listed here are not listed by any rating system. We do not rate any product or post any feedback about products listed here. We leave this to the individual merchants to provide. We do not provide product prices or shopping carts since you do not order these products directly from us, but from the merchant providing the products. We only provide the link to that merchant webpage with all related product information and pricing. The products are listed here by merchant, product use, quantity size or volume, and for nutritional supplements - dosage per unit. All product descriptions are provided by the merchant or manufacturer and are not our descriptive review of the product. We do not endorse any specific product or attest to its effectiveness to treat any health condition or support nutritional requirements for any individual.
WOODRUFF HERBAL PRODUCTS
MOUNTAIN ROSE HERBS PRODUCTS
Mountain Rose Herbs: Sweet Woodruff (Galium Odoratum), Certified Organic Bulk Herbs & Spices
HerbsPro: Almased Wellness Herbal Blend Tea, 3.5 oz. Made from selected herbs including Whitethorn, Elder blossom, Marjoram, Woodruff and Celery. Add one to two teaspoons of tea leaves to one large cup, pour in boiling water, and let steep for ten to twenty minutes. Strain and enjoy. Also good as iced tea.
Amazon: Sweet Woodruff Herbal Supplement Products
Amazon: Sweet Woodruff Herbal Gourmet Food Products
Amazon: Sweet Woodruff Herbal Products
Nutrition Basics: Woodruff Herbal Information
AROMATHERAPY: ESSENTIAL OILS DESCRIPTIONS & USES
Allspice Leaf Oil Angelica Oil Anise Oil Baobab Oil Basil Oil Bay Laurel Oil Bay Oil Benzoin Oil Bergamot Oil Black Pepper Oil Chamomile (German) Oil Cajuput Oil Calamus Oil Camphor (White) Oil Caraway Oil Cardamom Oil Carrot Seed Oil Catnip Oil Cedarwood Oil Chamomile Oil Cinnamon Oil Citronella Oil Clary-Sage Oil Clove Oil Coriander Oil Cypress Oil Dill Oil Eucalyptus Oil Fennel Oil Fir Needle Oil Frankincense Oil Geranium Oil German Chamomile Oil Ginger Oil Grapefruit Oil Helichrysum Oil Hyssop Oil Iris-Root Oil Jasmine Oil Juniper Oil Labdanum Oil Lavender Oil Lemon-Balm Oil Lemongrass Oil Lemon Oil Lime Oil Longleaf-Pine Oil Mandarin Oil Marjoram Oil Mimosa Oil Myrrh Oil Myrtle Oil Neroli Oil Niaouli Oil Nutmeg Oil Orange Oil Oregano Oil Palmarosa Oil Patchouli Oil Peppermint Oil Peru-Balsam Oil Petitgrain Oil Pine-Long Leaf Oil Pine-Needle Oil Pine-Swiss Oil Rosemary Oil Rose Oil Rosewood Oil Sage Oil Sandalwood Oil Savory Oil Spearmint Oil Spikenard Oil Swiss-Pine Oil Tangerine Oil Tea-Tree Oil Thyme Oil Vanilla Oil Verbena Oil Vetiver Oil Violet Oil White-Camphor Oil Yarrow Oil Ylang-Ylang Oil Aromatherapy
Healing Baths For Colds
Using Essential Oils
AROMATHERAPY: HERBAL & CARRIER OILS DESCRIPTIONS & USES
Almond, Sweet Oil Apricot Kernel Oil Argan Oil Arnica Oil Avocado Oil Baobab Oil Black Cumin Oil Black Currant Oil Black Seed Oil Borage Seed Oil Calendula Oil Camelina Oil Castor Oil Coconut Oil Comfrey Oil Evening Primrose Oil Flaxseed Oil Grapeseed Oil Hazelnut Oil Hemp Seed Oil Jojoba Oil Kukui Nut Oil Macadamia Nut Oil Meadowfoam Seed Oil Mullein Oil Neem Oil Olive Oil Palm Oil Plantain Oil Plum Kernel Oil Poke Root Oil Pomegranate Seed Oil Pumpkin Seed Oil Rosehip Seed Oil Safflower Oil Sea Buckthorn Oil Sesame Seed Oil Shea Nut Oil Soybean Oil St. Johns Wort Oil Sunflower Oil Tamanu Oil Vitamin E Oil Wheat Germ Oil
HELPFUL RELATED MOONDRAGON NUTRITION BASICS LINKS
MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Amino Acids Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Antioxidants Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Enzymes Information MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Herbs Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Homeopathics Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Hydrosols Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Minerals Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Mineral Introduction MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Dietary & Cosmetic Supplements Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Dietary Supplements Introduction MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Specialty Supplements MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Vitamins Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Vitamins Introduction
NUTRITION BASICS ARTICLES
MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: 4 Basic Nutrients MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Avoid Foods That Contain Additives & Artificial Ingredients MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Is Aspartame A Safe Sugar Substitute? MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Guidelines For Selecting & Preparing Foods MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Foods That Destroy MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Foods That Heal MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: The Micronutrients: Vitamins & Minerals MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Avoid Overcooking Your Foods MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Phytochemicals MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Increase Your Consumption of Raw Produce MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Limit Your Use of Salt MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Use Proper Cooking Utensils MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Choosing The Best Water & Types of Water
RELATED MOONDRAGON HEALTH LINKS & INFORMATION
MoonDragon's Nutrition Information Index MoonDragon's Nutritional Therapy Index MoonDragon's Nutritional Analysis Index MoonDragon's Nutritional Diet Index MoonDragon's Nutritional Recipe Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Therapy: Preparing Produce for Juicing MoonDragon's Nutrition Information: Food Additives Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Information: Food Safety Links MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Index MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Articles MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Back Pain MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Labor & Birth MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Blending Chart MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Essential Oil Details MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Links MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Miscarriage MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Post Partum MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Childbearing MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Problems in Pregnancy & Birthing MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Chart of Essential Oils #1 MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Chart of Essential Oils #2 MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Tips MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Uses MoonDragon's Alternative Health Index MoonDragon's Alternative Health Information Overview MoonDragon's Alternative Health Therapy Index MoonDragon's Alternative Health: Touch & Movement Therapies Index MoonDragon's Alternative Health Therapy: Touch & Movement: Aromatherapy MoonDragon's Alternative Therapy: Touch & Movement - Massage Therapy MoonDragon's Alternative Health: Therapeutic Massage MoonDragon's Holistic Health Links Page 1 MoonDragon's Holistic Health Links Page 2 MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Nutrition Basics Index MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Therapy Index MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Massage Therapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Hydrotherapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Pain Control Therapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Relaxation Therapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Steam Inhalation Therapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Therapy - Herbal Oils Index
For a full list of available products from Mountain Rose Herbs, click on banner below:
MOONDRAGON'S REALM - WEBSITE DIRECTORY
A website map to help you find what you are looking for on MoonDragon.org's Website. Available pages have been listed under appropriate directory headings.