An herb entry from the Ancient Herbs and Modern Herbs book by James K. Sayre, Copyright, 2001. All rights reserved.


Feverfew - Tanacetum parthenium (Chrysanthemum parthenium) (Matricaria parthenium) (Pyrethrum parthenium) - family: Asteraceae (Compositae) (Sunflower Family) (Composite Family).

This is a perennial plant that grows to about three feet in height. It has deeply-scalloped aromatic leaves. In the summer it sports small daisy-like flowers with a yellow disk center and white petals. It has been used medicinally since the times of the ancient Greeks. Traditional European folk use of flowers and leaves as a remedy for arthritis, indigestion, intestinal parasites, migraine headaches and fevers. Modern American folk use of leaves as a remedy for allergies, back pain, hay fever, migraine headache and stress. The leaves have also been used as a traditional European folk method to produce abortion. Its leaves have also been used as an insecticide. It is a very bitter tasting herb. Note: possible side effects include mouth ulcers and headaches! Note: avoid use if pregnant or if nursing. Native to Europe. Naturalized in eastern, central and western North America. Naturalized in California. Cultivated as an ornamental and as a medicinal herb in North America. There are several cultivars.


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Web page last updated on 21 May 2003.