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Common Name: Great Valley Gumweed
Grindelia robusta is a perennial plant that can grow up to 0.60 metres tall.
It is harvested from the wild for local use as a food, medicine and source of materials.
South-western N. America.
By the coast[
] in sunny well-drained situations[
]. Thrives in dry areas and salty plains[
Succeeds in any well-drained soil in full sun[
]. Does well on dry sandy banks and in poor soils[
Plants tend to concentrate selenium in the leaves and stems, this is especially noticeable on soils that are relatively rich in that element[
This plant is one of several species that are not recognised as distinct species in the Flora of North America, being treated instead as geographic forms and therefore synonyms of G. hirsutula[
]. For the time being, these species are being maintained as distinct in this database[
The nomenclatural type of G. robusta is a hybrid that came from a cross between plants assignable to G. hirsutula in the sense of Lane and plants assignable to G. stricta in the sense of Lane. Within Lane’s interpretation and taxonomic constraints, G. robusta cannot be placed in synonymy of the species name of either 'parent.' We believe instead that the type of robusta belongs to the 'taxon' that has been called bracteosa[
Some authorities class this species as a synonym of G. camporum.
Leaves - raw[
The leaves and flowering tops are antiphlogistic, antispasmodic, balsamic, demulcent, expectorant, sedative, stomachic and a vascular tonic[
]. Blood purifier[
]. The plant is applied externally as a compress on inflamed or irritated areas of the skin[
]. Used internally, it slows down the heartbeat and reduces the stimulation of the nerve endings in the air passages that causes coughing - it is therefore extremely effective as a calming agent in the treatment of asthma[
The fluid extract is prepared by placing the freshly gathered leaves and flowers in a small quantity of simmering water for about 15 minutes[
The plant is used to treat people affected by poison-ivy[
Yellow and green dyes are obtained from the flowering heads and pods[
A decoction of the roots has been used as a hair shampoo to kill lice[
Seed - sow autumn or spring in a cool greenhouse and only just cover the seed. Prick out the plants into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and plant them out into their permanent positions in early summer.