Botanical: Collinsonia canadensis
Family: Labiatae/Lamiaceae (mint)
Other common names: Stone Root, Richweed, Hardhack, Horseweed, Knob Root, Knot Root,
Horse Balm, Rich Leaf, Knobweed, Oxbalm
Collinsonia was used by generations of settlers and Native Americans alike as a "cure-all" and remedy for treating bladder and kidney stones. It is a potent diuretic that is said to relieve virtually all urinary tract disorders. Herbalists have long relied on it to reduce excessive water retention and alleviate diarrhea, colitis, digestive complaints and varicose veins.
The information presented herein by Herbal Extracts Plus is intended for educational purposes only. These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, cure, treat or prevent disease. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.
Collinsonia is a native North American perennial that may be found in the damp woodlands of Canada and the United States. The hard, knobby rootstock is brown-gray and sends up a quadrangular stem that bears oval, serrate leaves terminating in branches of greenish-yellow flowers that bloom from July to October. Collinsonia thrives in moist soil in partial shade and reaches a height of four feet. The whole plant exudes a strong lemon fragrance and a pungent, bitter taste, which has earned it the common name, Richweed; and its English and botanical name, Collinsonia, was bestowed upon it in honor of the man who discovered it, Peter Collinson. Generations of Native Americans and settlers alike in the mountains of Virginia, the Carolinas, Kentucky and Tennessee used the leaves in lotions and washes to heal wounds, cuts and bruises and considered the root, which appears to have potent diuretic properties, a reliable treatment for "the stone" (kidney and bladder stones), which is believed to be the root's traditional use for removing gravel from the bladder and preventing the formation of kidney stones. It is also thought to be the origin of one of the herb's common names, Stone Root. Collinsonia was also an important household remedy for headaches and constipation, and during the nineteenth century, Collinsonia continued to enjoy further use by physicians in the United States. It is still employed as a reliable diuretic by veterinary surgeons. Collinsonia is collected from the wild in autumn, dried, and used in herbal medicines. Some of the constituents in Collinsonia include resin, mucilage, starch, tannin, wax, volatile oil and an alkaloid.
Collinsonia is considered a powerful diuretic that has been highly valued in all complaints of the urinary organs. By promoting increased urine flow, the herb has helped to relieve excessive water retention and dropsy (edema - the accumulation of fluids in tissues). Moreover, it helps to relieve a variety of urinary tract complaints, including cystitis, benign prostate hypertrophy, vaginitis, urinary tract irritation, catarrh of the bladder and leukorrhoea.
Further supporting Collinsonia's role as an important and potent herbal diuretic, it has long been used as a reliable remedy that increases urine flow, helping to flush the bladder and kidneys of gravel and other urinary sediment, which thus helps to prevent the formation of kidney stones.
Collinsonia is said to be an astringent and antispasmodic that has been very useful in the relief of diarrhea, hemorrhoids, dysentery, colitis and diverticulosis.
As an overall tonic, Collinsonia is believed to help strengthen capillaries, the minute blood vessels that connect the arteries and veins, and as such, may be helpful for the cardiovascular system. This factor may also account for the herb's use to relieve varicose veins.
Collinsonia has been employed as a home remedy for headaches, rectal pain, and also as a digestive aid that was used to relieve gastroenteritis and other problems connected with the digestive system.
Used externally, Collinsonia has been included in poultices to heal wounds, bruises, sores and cuts and has also been added to mouthwashes and gargles.
Pregnant and nursing women should not use Collinsonia Herbal Supplement, and overuse (many times the recommended dosage) may cause vomiting.