Mullein first came into my life when I was a member of the Perennial Society working in their demonstration gardens. I saw this lovely tall spike flower - "What's that?" I inquired and found it was the Mullein (Verbascum Thapsus).
And, low and behold there was a few plants being offered in their plant exchange (which I quickly snagged up.)
Tall Spike of Flowers from the Common Mullein Plant
Knowing it is classified as a herb I put it in my herb garden. It is not a true perennial but self-seeds pretty good. In fact, these few plants that I was babying to get established in my garden, grew plentiful wild, in a bit warmer climates.
Close Up of the Fuzzy Mullein Leaf (Often Called Flannel Plant)
The first year only it's big fuzzy leaves grow. I love the feel of them and they are soft enough to use as diapers or linings for soles of old worn shoes with a bonus of being anti-inflammatory and having anti-bacterial properties!
Mullein is considered a cool, soothing demulcent herb which is particularly good at acting on the lungs.
My son had problems with his lungs and we made hot infusions, mullein leaf tea, and also dried some of the leaves combining it with colts-foot for smoking to relieve congestion in his lungs. Sore throats will respond well to the hot leaf tea too.
Mullein is known for relieving acute asthma and bronchitis and it worked very well for my son.
Infusions from the seeds are also know to help childhood asthma and convulsions.
Veterinarians use fresh picked leaves to give to cattle to treat coughs and expel tapeworms (also good for riding of parasites in humans) plus they use powdered roots mixed in chicken feed to fatten the chickens up.
Another use for the leaves is in Moxibustion.
Moxibustion is a form of heat therapy in which dried plant materials called "moxa" are burned on or very near the surface of the skin. The intention is to warm and invigorate the flow of Qi in the body and dispel certain pathogenic influences. Read more about it here
The tall dried spikes of spent seeds were also used for torches dipping them in tallow or whatever oil you have on hand (veggie oil is fine) or it makes a wonderful wick, simply dip the stalk in some melted wax.
I like to leave the tall spikes of seeds standing for the winter for the birds.
The seeds not only make good bird seed but the seeds have a mild narcotic effect that easily passes through the intestine to relieve obstructions and kill parasites.
Close Up of Flowers of the Mullein Plant
The flowers can be used by adding them to a hot water as a steam for respiratory weakness.
The whole plant is used for efficiently dissolving gallstones if you gather the plant after the first frost when there are still crystals on it, stuff them into a container and mash and bruise them, then allow it to ferment. Drink this for treating gallstones..
Note: Information offered on is for educational purposes only. This post makes neither medical claim, nor intends to diagnose or treat medical conditions. Links to external sites are for informational purposes only. This post neither endorses them nor is in any way responsible for their content. Readers must do their own research concerning the safety and usage of any herbs or supplements. If you are pregnant or nursing consult a professional before using herbs.
Image Mulliein leaf - from Missouri Department of Conservation
Pictures of Mullein plant and flowers is from Pixabay.