Curly hop (Humulus lupulus L.)

Curly hop is a perennial herb belonging to the Cannabis family (Cannabinaceae). Other names: hop, khmelnitsa, gorkach.


Herbaceous plant with a climbing, up to 5 m long stem, longish cord-like rhizome and opposite leaves. Stem tetrahedral, ribbed with short hooked spines. Leaves on long, thin, tenaciously rough petioles with large, lanceolate, mostly fused stipules; they are dark yellow above, lighter below, rough, seated with golden yellow glands, palmately incised into 3-5 pointed, along the edges of large-striated lobes (only the upper leaves are sometimes whole). Flowers small, dioecious. Staminate flowers are greenish-yellow, on short pedicels, collected in rare axillary paniculate inflorescences. Pistillate flowers in single heads with large covering scales, in the axils of which 2 flowers sit. The covering scales increase greatly when ripe and give the inflorescences a resemblance to a cone, scales are covered with yellow glands. The fruit is a whitish-gray, rounded, slightly compressed one-seeded nutlet from the sides. Hops bloom from June to mid-August, bear fruit in August-September. It occurs in broad-leaved forests, alder forests, in shrubs along river banks, forest edges, on moist soil near fences and in gardens, not often cultivated.

Harvesting, description of raw materials:

In medicine, unfertilized stems of hop cones, called Strobuli Lupuli, are used. They are harvested in mid-August, when they begin to ripen, at which time the cones are greenish-yellow in color. Later, when they turn yellow-brown, they are not collected. The cones are torn off along with the legs, dried in the shade. Properly dried raw materials retain their natural color.

Medicinal use:

Hops are traditionally used as a sedative in a mixture with others. In addition, when shaking off the cones, a scree of glands is obtained in the form of a yellow powder – lupulin. In folk medicine, a decoction of flowers is drunk for insomnia, a decoction of inflorescences for inflammation of the gallbladder, cystitis, pulmonary tuberculosis, dandruff, a decoction of roots for jaundice, tangles and headaches .

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