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Common Name: Spotted Cranesbill
Geranium maculatum is a perennial plant that can grow up to 0.60 metres tall.
It is harvested from the wild for local use as a medicine and source of materials..
Eastern N. America - Maine to Georgia, west to Arkansas, Kansas and Manitoba.
Wet places in woods, wet rocks and in swamps[
]. Woodlands, thickets and meadows[
Succeeds in any moderately fertile retentive soil in a sunny position[
]. Tolerates a wide range of soil types[
], including water-logged soils[
Plants are hardy to about -25°c[
Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer or rabbits[
The whole plant, but especially the root, is antiseptic, highly astringent, diuretic, styptic and tonic[
]. An infusion of the whole plant, or of the roots alone, is used in the treatment of diarrhoea (especially in children and the elderly), dysentery, irritable bowel syndrome, cholera, kidney complaints, bleeding and a wide range of other ailments[
]. It is often used in combination with other herbs[
]. Externally, it is applied to purulent wounds, haemorrhoids, thrush, vaginal discharges and inflammations of the mouth[
]. The plants are rich in tannin[
], the root containing 10 - 20%[
The roots can be harvested in the autumn then dried and stored[
]. It is best to harvest the roots as the plant comes into flower since it is then at its most active medicinally[
]. The leaves are harvested as the plant comes into flower and are dried for later use[
A brown dye is obtained from the flowers[
The roots and the leaves are rich in tannin[
Plants are suitable for ground cover when spaced about 45cm apart each way[
Seed - sow spring in a cold frame. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in the summer.
Division in spring or autumn. Larger clumps can be replanted direct into their permanent positions, though it is best to pot up smaller clumps and grow them on in a cold frame until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the spring.