White willow – white willow

A dioecious plant of the willow family. The tree is 20–30 m tall. Young branches are silvery-fluffy at the ends, old ones are bare, brown. The leaves are entire, alternate, lanceolate or broadly lanceolate, pointed, serrate, 5–12 cm long and 1–3 cm wide; young – pubescent, white-silver on both sides, adults – white-silver on both sides or above, below pubescent along the central vein, above – bare. Flowers unisexual, in stamen and pistillate earrings; stamens – cylindrical, 7 cm long and 1 cm in diameter, yellow, pistils – thin, green. Bract scales are pale. The fruit is a box. Blooms in April – May, after the leaves appear.

Distribution . It grows throughout the territory of Ukraine (except the Carpathian highlands) along river floodplains, on wet meadows, in wet forests. It is widely cultivated as a decorative and phytomeliorating plant.

Procurement and storage . Bark collected during sap flow from 3–4-year-old branches is used. Dry outdoors or in a well-ventilated room. 33% of dry raw material is obtained.

The plant is unofficial .

Chemical composition . White willow bark contains tannins (about 12%), flavonoids, flavone glycosides (2.5–3%).

Pharmacological properties and use. White willow bark decoction has analgesic, sedative, anti-inflammatory, antipyretic, diaphoretic, antimalarial, antiseptic, hemostatic, wound-healing, astringent and anthelmintic properties. It is used for headache, neuralgia, various forms of neurosis, rheumatism, gout, colds, malaria, indigestion of food in the stomach, inflammatory phenomena in the stomach and intestines, jaundice, diseases of the spleen and liver (when they are overloaded with large doses of toxins), diarrhea, inflammation of the urinary tract, gynecological and infectious diseases, gastric, intestinal, uterine and other bleeding. Externally, the bark decoction is used for rinsing (for stomatitis, gingivitis, periodontitis, angina, inflammatory processes of the oral cavity and throat), for foot baths (for hyperhidrosis, phlebitis, varicose veins, muscle weakness

Medicinal forms and applications .

Internally – bark decoction (15 g per 200 ml of boiling water) 1 tablespoon three times a day;

bark infusion (1 teaspoon per 200 ml of boiling water, infuse until cool, filter) 1 tablespoon 4–5 times a day;

bark powder 0.5–1 g per night.

Externally – infusion for baths (1 teaspoon of bark powder per 400 ml of cold water, infuse for 8 hours, filter) with hyperhidrosis;

a strong bark decoction for rinsing, washing wounds and foot baths.

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