Photos of Verbena hastata, Blue vervain, American Blue Vervain, American Vervain

Verbena hastata, Blue vervain, American Blue Vervain, American Vervain, Swamp Vervain, Wild Hyssop, and Simpler's Joy are just some of the common names applied to Verbena hastata. A member of the Verbenaceae, it is native to most of the 48 contiguous U.S. states and adjacent Canada, occurring in fields, thickets; often in moist soils. Traditionally, the herb is used to relieve gastric irritation, as an expectorant and to induce sweating. Use by indigenous peoples was adopted by early European settlers. Despite widespread and long use in herbal medicine in North America, there is very little research on this widespread native plant. Recent research finds that like Verbena officinalis, it contains hastatoside, an iridoid, with anti-inflammatory and analgesic activity. An ethanolic extracts has been shown to have antidiarrheal effects and induces gastrointestinal motility.

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