Blue Vervain (Verbena hastata)
Blue Vervain, a candelabra in the meadow.
This native perennial wildflower can grow in disturbed sites and is often found in meadows, thickets, and pastures, as well as riversides, marshes, ditches, and river-bottom prairies. It prefers moist conditions and full to partial sun.
It has been used regularly as a medicinal plant helping to soothe depression, fight insomnia, treat fevers, coughs, cramps, and headaches. Externally it's used for acne, ulcers, and cuts. Supplements can be found at health food stores. (Warning: Blue vervain can interfere with blood pressure medication and hormone therapy. Large doses will induce vomiting and diarrhea. )
Blue Vervain is also very important to wildlife: to butterflies as it's the larval host plant to the common Buckeye butterfly, birds will eat the seeds of the plant, a wide variety of bees enjoy the flowers in the summer.
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Since 2015 we have been exploring and sharing all the amazing things we’ve found in nature.
Emily is an Ohio Certified Volunteer Naturalist who is most often found out in the woods.