(Clivers) A versatile and valuable plant. One of the most powerful restorative
herbs for the lymphatic system, cleavers is beneficial in treating swollen
glands, tonsillitis and adnoid problems.
Internally and externally,
it is effective in the treatment of many types of inflammations including
relieving skin conditions, acne, pimples, rashes and burns. It is a blood
purifier and has diuretic qualities.
It is effective in treating
urinary tract infections, kidney stones, cystitis and can ease the painful
swelling of urinary and reproductive organs.
A decoction or infusion
made from fresh Cleavers is said to be useful for sunburn and freckles when
applied externally with a soft cloth.
The narrow, lance-shaped
leaves look as if they possess whorls of six leaves, but each whorl has only
two real leaves. One may be recognized by having a bud or shoot arising from
its axil, the other four are stipules, two belonging to each leaf. They are
about 1/2 inch long and 1/4 inch broad and are arranged in rosettes or whorls,
six or eight together, rough all over both margins and surface with prickles
pointing backwards. The flowers are two or three together. They spring from the
axils of the leaves and are small and star-like, either white or
greenish-white. They are followed by little globular seed-vessels, about 8 inch
in diameter, covered with hooked bristles and, like the leaves, stick to
whatever they touch. This is how the seeds are dispersed.
The seeds of
Cleavers dried and slightly roasted over a fire have the flavor of
coffee. Brew the whole plant as a decoction and it's more like tea. The
plant has no odor and has a bitterish and somewhat astringent taste.
The chemical constituents are
chlorophyll, starch, a tannic acid (galitannic acid), citric acid and
a rubichloric acid.
Dosage, up to three times per
day: five to ten #0 capsules, or half to one teaspoon of the extract or
tincture, or one cup of an infusion. Externally, apply as
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