Herb name: Comfrey, Symphytum officinale
Useful plant parts: The root mostly, but also all parts that grow above ground
Description: Comfrey is a plant high about 20 to 100 cm, with sharp hairs on the leaves. It often grows in a shrub-like form. The leaves are large and, as noted, have a hairy surface. In the soil it mostly has a thick and juicy root. Comfrey usually has purple bell shaped flowers, which are formed at the beginning of the upper leaves.
Collecting period and locations: The roots are gathered in the spring or during the autumn. It is necessary to remove all the soil from the roots when picked. After that, the roots are cut longitudinally and left in an airy place to dry. Above-ground parts of the plants are gathered mostly during the flowering period (May). As for the locations, comfrey can be found easily in the continental parts as a very common plant. It grows well in damp places, along ditches, in dunes, orchards and similar places.
Medicinal properties and applications: Comfrey is used in the treatment of bone injuries, ulcers and wounds - usually by placing compresses on the wounds, that were soaked in water in which the roots of comfrey were cooked. Comfrey is effective in treating open wounds and festers. Allantoin as the active substance, heals the wounds and helps in the formation of new healthy tissue.
Active compounds: Allantioin, tannins, flavonoids, vitamin B, mucilage, various organic acids and triterpenes.
Recipe: The liquid for soaking compresses is prepared by taking about 100 grams of comfrey roots and cooking them about 10 minutes in water. After that, the liquid is strained, and is used to soak the compresses in.
Tea can also be prepared from comfrey roots, so that about 2 teaspoons of dried roots are placed in 1/4 liters of boiling water and left for about 15 minutes. After that, the tea is strained and is ready.