Cornflowers right – common basil

Name: Cornflowers spravzhnі – common basil

Cornflowers right (Ocimum basilicum); common basil


An annual herbaceous plant of the Labialaceae family. Grass and flowers have a strong pleasant aroma. The stem is straight, branched, four-sided, 15–50 cm high. The leaves are opposite, petiolate, ovate-rhombic, almost bare; apical – purple, hairy. The flowers are irregular, with a white or pink corolla, collected in a tassel-like inflorescence. Fruit – from 4 nuts. The plant blooms in June – July.

Spread. Cornflowers come from South Asia. In Ukraine, it is cultivated as an essential oil plant.

Procurement and storage . Herb (Herba Ocimi basilici) collected during flowering of the plant is used. The entire above-ground mass is cut at a height of 8–10 cm from the ground surface. New shoots grow on the plant, which can also be harvested. Dry under a tent or in a room with good ventilation. 16% of dry raw material is obtained.

The plant is unofficial.

Chemical composition . The grass of the plant contains essential oil, glycosides, saponins, rutin, carotene, etc. The composition of the essential oil includes methylchavicol, cineole, ocimene, 1-linalool, eugenol and camphor.

Pharmacological properties and use . The preparations of real cornflowers have pain-relieving, anticonvulsant, antispasmodic and bactericidal properties. The plant is used as a tonic for asthenia, weakened respiratory function, impaired blood circulation, depressed state of the central nervous system. Domestic and foreign folk medicine recommends real cornflowers for epilepsy, headache, vomiting, colds of the upper respiratory tract, gastric and intestinal colic, inflammation of the kidneys, bladder and urinary channels, as a means that increases appetite, improves digestion, promotes milk secretion in nursing mothers. As an external remedy, real cornflowers are used in dermatology and cosmetics. Fresh or dry leaves of the plant are used as a seasoning.

Medicinal forms and applications . Internally – herbal infusion (2 tablespoons pour half a liter of boiling water, infuse until cool) half a glass 2-3 times a day.

Externally – herbal infusion (prepared as in the previous recipe) for rinsing and compresses in aphthosis, gingivitis, stomatitis, eczema and allergic dermatitis;

fresh juice of the plant for instillation in purulent inflammation of the middle ear.

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