ARCTIUM LAPPA BURDOCK
In the first year, large, floppy dark green leaves make a strong rosette. The following spring, strong stems arise bearing clusters of attractive purple "thistle" flowers, which open from mid Summer to Autumn. They then produce branches decorated with cherry-sized hooked burrs, or seed capsules, which are often used by children to throw onto woolly jumpers causing much distress to their parents! This plant was supposedly the source of the idea for developing Velcro! The roots are black on the outside, and usually like a very long carrot, and can be roasted like parsnip, sliced finely and stir fried or made into a puree.The black skin needs to be peeled off first revealing the thin vegetable that can be treated like asparagus or used raw in salads. Burdock is a traditional medicinal herb used by herbalists for many ailments. The root, leaf, and seed are used for skin problems, stomach problems, joint swelling, and other conditions, Burdock root oil extract, also called burr oil, is used in Europe as a scalp treatment. If you are camping, the leaves can be used to wrap and protect food when cooking in a ground or clay oven or in campfires. In America, burdock leaves have been simmered in milk to counteract venom from rattlesnake bites, but we definitely do not recommend trying this! Nonetheless, it is freely available as a natural remedy in many health food stores and pharmacies, and is often used to treat migraines and hay fever and has a number of other potential uses. And finally of course, who has never heard of dandelion and burdock cordial!
Biennials take two years to complete their life cycle. In the first year, the plant develops its leaves, stems, and roots develop, the stem of the plant remaining short and the leaves low to the ground, forming a rosette. In the second year, the stem of the plant will elongate or “bolt” before making a large display of flowers and seeds, after which the plant often dies, but some plants can re-generate and survive for several years.
Common name:Burdock, Arctium, Arctium lappa, Arctium minus, Arctium tomentosum, Beggar's Buttons, Burdock Root Extract, Burr Seed, Clotbur, Cocklebur, Cockle Buttons, Edible Burdock, Fox's Clote, Great Burdock, ...