Day 7 Herb of the Day Skullcap!
Magic and Medicinals. What our ancestors knew by The Magic Apothecary, Mary Elizabeth Micari
Disclaimer: The following information is of an educational and general nature and should not be construed as legal advice. You should consult appropriate written and professional sources to answer questions related to your individual situation. Exercising one’s rights often entails some element of risk, and you should verify all information relevant to your situation before acting; the author and publisher disclaim any responsibility or liability for any loss incurred as a consequence of the use of any information herein.
Skullcap: (Scutellaria lateriflora)
Other Common Names: Blue, greater, hairy, hooded, American, European western, mad-dog and side-flowering skullcap.
It is also called scullcap, helmet flower, blue pimpernel, quaker bonnet, hooded willow flower, mad-dog weed, mad weed, hoodwort and hoodwart.
This herb can be found in partially shaded, wetland areas. It prefers light shade to full sun, but it grows well on my porch and it comes back stronger every year! It can flourish in moist soil with plenty of organic matter. I leave things on top of it all winter for this purpose. Leaves, and other garden debris. The plant is native to North America. It grows to about 2 feet tall and has a light green or reddish green stem. The leaves are coarsely serrated around their edges. It produces flowers that are blue and lavender. They are tube like shaped.
This plant blooms from May to August. The flowers are replaced by a two-chamber seed pod containing four seeds. The roots system consists of a taproot and rhizomes.
The flowers and the leaves are used for medicinal purposes and are collected during the summer when the plant is in bloom. The herb can be dried for later use.
Skullcap contains substances like flavonoids, iridol, sesquiterpene, tannins, bitter substances, essential oil, resin, iron, silicon, calcium, magnesium, lignin and wogonin.
Some Native American tribes used it as an emmenagogue (brings on menses) to bring young girls into womanhood.
It was also traditionally used to bring on visions (in large doses) during spiritual ceremonies.
It was once used as a treatment for rabies and schizophrenia (hence the names mad-dog skullcap, mad-dog weed and mad weed.) but is no longer.
This plant is also a nervine with sedative qualities and is helpful in the treatment of many nervous conditions such as epilepsy, hysteria, anxiety, delirium tremens and as a remedy for panic attack. I use it for my students in my voice studio and for myself for stage fright or jitters in a mild tea. Works well.
It has also been found useful in treating symptoms of withdrawal from barbiturates and tranquilizers.
Medicinal infusions of this herb have been used to promote menstruation.
An infusion of skullcap may also be helpful in treating throat infections It is also used for treating headaches from stress, neuralgia, and from incessant coughing.
This herb can also be used to bring on a natural sleep without the negative effects of many prescription and over-the-counter sleep aids.
Skullcap is gaining some recognition as an alternative treatment for but that is a new addition to its effects.
This plant is sometimes used to treat the symptoms associated with anorexia nervosa, fibromyalgia and even mild Tourette’s syndrome.
Skullcap is also used as a treatment for asthma and as a hiccup and hangover remedy.
Skullcap is available in powder or liquid extract form and as a dried herb. It is commonly sold in capsule form as well.
The recommended dosage for adults is 1 to 2 grams of the dried herb, 2 to 3 cups of tea, 2 to 4 mL of the liquid extract three times daily, or 2 to 5 mL of the tincture three times daily.
Please consult your physician before use.
Children may use skullcap but in small doses. The best method of delivery is a mild tea. The child’s physician should be consulted before use.
To make a medicinal tea try adding one pint of boiling water to 1 oz. of the dried herb and steep for 10 minutes. This can be served in half cup servings every few hours.
For children add 1 cup boiling water to 1 tsp. of dried leaves and steep only 2 minutes to yield a milder tea.
Overdose symptoms include giddiness, stupor, confusion, irregular heartbeat and twitching. Pregnant women shouldn’t use this herb since it may cause a miscarriage.
Some supplements have been tainted with plants of the Teucrium species, which have been shown to cause liver damage. It’s important to seek skullcap from reputable sources.
There are no documented cases of negative interactions with other herbs or medications although it does have a sedative effect and should not be combined with prescription sedatives.
Its planetary element is Saturn. Solid and forceful. Its element is water, gender feminine4, and it is associated with the Goddess of the Hearth Hestia. It brings love, peace and fidelity.
Skullcap can be worn by women to keep their husbands or lovers faithful. It can be used in sleep pillows for relaxation & peace. It has often been used to bind oaths and consecrate vows & commitments (handfasting, initiations, etc.). Can be used to seal a relationship that will extend beyond this life. For this purpose Skullcap may be worn, burned as incense, or used as an oil. Can be used in bath magick as a soak (add some herb to Epsom salts or other bath salts in a mesh bag) to calm the aura and cleanse the away tensions and stress. You can use it in spells for relief from disharmony and disruptive situations. Place a pinch in a lover’s shoes to keep them from being attracted to others.
A tea made from this herb is excellent for preventing nightmares. It can also be used as a restorative after spiritual or magical assault or recovery from exorcism or other trials. In some traditional medicines, skullcap is combined with Vervain.
In Hoodoo it is used for attracting gifts of money. It is a very nice herb to grow and grows well in many gardens and spaces, even in a flowerpot on the window. Keep away from animals and children.
It may be made into a Mojo Bag with two small Lodestones by women who wish to keep their husbands faithful. (Other herbs which may be added to such a nation sack include Periwinkle and Basil. The hand will be stronger if you also add the man’s hair or his “measure.”)
You can keep skullcap in a saucer with some coins and dress it with Attraction Oil to attract Gifts of Money. Women wishing to Attract Money from Men may dress the coins and SKULLCAP with Cleo May Oil.
Used as a tea, drink before meditation or to enhance the development of. As a bath, used for calming the aura of tensions and stress. Burned for relief of disharmony and disruptive situations.
Here’s an idea for a Skullcap Money spell: To inspire others to give you money, place some skullcap in a small saucer and moisten it with money mist, or money drawing oil. Get a ball of green cord or yarn and wind it around your “nest egg” of skullcap and oil, binding until the herb is completely covered and secure.
Tie the cord so that the ball will not unwind and hang above the doorway. All who enter will become possessed with an unreasoning desire to bring gifts & money to your home. Anoint the ball every seventh day with a few drops of the oil to preserve its powers.
Modern Information: Web MD