Viper – meadowsweet

Filipendula ulmaria (Filipendula ulmaria, synonym — Spiraea ulmaria); naked viper, labaznik, marsh honeysuckle, spirea spirea, tavolga ulizoly, boroshen; the Rose family (Rosaceae); Labaznik vyazolistny


In wet places – lowlands, swamps, near streams and small rivers – you can often feel a thick honey aroma on a hot day. And here is its source – a tall plant with lush sultanas of yellowish flowers. This is a knotweed viper, or a knotweed. The height of viper thickets (it almost never grows alone) is up to 100-170 cm.

The leaves of the plant are intermittently odd-pinnate. The flowers are usually whitish-yellow, rarely pink, sometimes red, small, in panicle-like inflorescences, multistamen. When you make your way through the viper thickets, all your clothes are covered with light yellow pollen.

Despite the pronounced honey smell, the viper attracts bees mainly as a source of pollen, not nectar. The flowering of this plant is extended from June to August, and pollen is collected not only by bees, but also by other insects.

Due to its wide distribution (the European part of Russia, Siberia, the entire territory of Ukraine), it is very easy to collect the plant: it is noticeable and easy to find.

Grass and rhizomes of viper are collected. The aerial part is cut during flowering, the rhizomes are dug up in autumn. The grass is tied into bundles and dried in well-ventilated rooms, and the rhizomes are cleaned from the ground, washed with cold water, cut into pieces of 10-15 cm and dried in the air under shelter or in the attic.

All parts of the plant contain tannins, glycosides, and the rhizomes also contain starch. The herb contains quite a lot of ascorbic acid (up to 370 mg%), essential oil and flavonoids.

An infusion of the rhizomes of viper helps to release urine and sweat, has pain-relieving properties, as well as an infusion of the herb, it is used for rheumatism. The infusion of rhizomes is also used as a disinfectant and hemostatic agent. It helps with anacid gastritis, gastric ulcer and hemorrhoids. Infusions and decoctions of viper are also used to treat various inflammations of the mucous membranes of the gastrointestinal tract, kidneys, and urinary tract. Plant preparations are prescribed for gout, heart failure, uterine bleeding and some skin diseases, including itchy eczema.

Infusion of rhizomes. 1 tablespoon of crushed rhizomes per 200 ml of boiling water. Heat in a water bath for 10 minutes, infuse for 2 hours, filter. Take 1 tablespoon 4 times a day.

Infusion of grass with flowers. In the evening, pour 0.5 liters of boiling water in a thermos on 1 tablespoon of crushed raw materials. Insist until morning, filter. Take 1/4 cup 4 times a day.

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