Also known as Mad Dog Skullcap and Virginia Skullcap, this is a long lived hardy perennial medicinal herb from the mint family with many pharmacological uses. Its extracts are used in herbal medicine as a mild sedative to treat anxiety and as a sleep promoter. Cherokee women have used it as an emmenagogue. Recent studies have isolated more than 295 compounds in Skullcap, including some highly active flavonoids and diterpenes. Studies show that Skullcap and its active principles possess wide pharmacological actions, such as antitumor, anti-angiogenesis, hepatoprotective, antioxidant, anticonvulsant, antibacterial and antiviral activities.
This is a wetland loving species, so needs moist soil and a sunny spot. It is worth growing for its attractive blue flowers alone. Unusually, most of these flowers do not appear at the top of the main stem, but are produced along the length of side branches that grow from the leaf axils. Height to 80cm. 9cm pot. Certified organic plant.
Main photo: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scutellaria_lateriflora
Gallery photos: Kahikatea Farm