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Common Name: Teasel
Dipsacus fullonum is a Biennial/Perennial up to 1.80 metres tall.
It is harvested from the wild for local use as a medicine and source of materials..
Europe, including Britain, from Norway south and east to N. Africa and W. Asia.
Copses, stream banks, roadsides, rough pasture etc, especially on clay soils[
Succeeds in most soils[
] but prefers clay[
]. Prefers a deep rich soil[
]. Requires a sunny position[
A good butterfly plant[
This is the true wild species of teasel, its bracts are too flexible to be used for combing cloth[
]. The flowering heads are much prized by flower arrangers because they keep their colour almost indefinitely when dried[
Teasel is little used in modern herbalism, and its therapeutic effects are disputed[
]. Traditionally it has been used to treat conditions such as warts, fistulae (abnormal passages opening through the skin) and cancerous sores[
The root is diaphoretic, diuretic and stomachic[
]. An infusion is said to strengthen the stomach, create an appetite, remove obstructions of the liver and treat jaundice[
]. The root is harvested in early autumn and dried for later use[
An infusion of the leaves has been used as a wash to treat acne[
The plant has a folk history of use in the treatment of cancer, an ointment made from the roots is used to treat warts, wens and whitlows[
A homeopathic remedy is made from the flowering plant[
]. It is used in the treatment of skin diseases[
A blue dye obtained from the dried plant is an indigo substitute[
]. It is water soluble[
]. A yellow is obtained when the plant is mixed with alum[
Seed - best sown in early spring in situ[
]. The seed can also be sown from late winter to May or from August to early autumn. All but the earlier sowings can be made outdoors.