What’s valerian root good for? Not a question I ever thought I’d be asking myself…
As a kid, I would love to climb trees, go in the back yard and explore the flowers, anything in nature (except insects!) I enjoyed. As an adult however, my allergies do not necessarily allow me to do as much as I used to! But, I am still fascinated by the world around us. That is one major reason why I started this journey into exploring herbalism and how to come into relationship with plants, herbs, and receive (with open arms!) their medicinal benefits. Today, we will talk a little bit about our featured October herb: Valerian Root and what it’s good for!
What’s Valerian Root Good For? Overview
Valerian, also known by its scientific name Valeriana officials, is commonly found throughout Europe and Western portions of Asia. However, it has naturalized to northeastern North America. Valerian grows tall and prefers wet soil conditions in open meadows. You can also spot Valerian at the edge of forest openings. The flowering bloom part of Valerian is shaggy in appearance and takes on the look of a bouquet (as shown in photo below). However, in culinary herbalism, we often use the root, hence Valerian root.
Valerian loves to steal the sunlight and is a light-dependent herb! It does the best in zones 3-9. If you desire to plant Valerian in your garden keep in mind it spreads! Pruning the flowers soon after blooming can help prevent wayward seeds. Just ensure you have a garden that will receive mostly sunlight, however Valerian will flower with partial shade as well. The effects and benefits of Valerian root are truly endless!
How beautiful is the bloom of Valerian!? It is beautiful and very aesthetically pleasing to look at. Also, the root portion of Valerian is the source material for some amazing medicinal uses! The root is the most concentrated so it will produce the most effective medicinal benefit. Here is a brief list of the many, MANY effects and benefits Valerian root can provide:
- Sleep aid and mild sedative- as a nerving and hypnotic, Valerian root is good for sleep!
- Pain reliever
- Menstrual cramps
- Nervous tension
- Muscle relaxer
- Reduce anxiety
I don’t know about you, but these are profound benefits and as a relatively safe herb, you can explore dosages and see what works best for you. You can turn valerian root into an herbal tea decoction, or a blend with other complementing herbs such as passion flower, and skull cap. More posts coming soon will discuss how to make an herbal infusion and decoction. Check out this article on another amazing herb: lemon balm!
If you are still asking yourself “What’s Valerian Root good for?” make sure to subscribe to our newsletter so you can stay up to date on all things herbal, and dive into more free resources to learn more about herbs; including valerian root! I promise you, this article is just the tip of the iceberg! There is so much more to learn about these amazing natural healers!
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If you are looking for a quick, healthy, and herbal smoothie that you can make quickly at home, look no further! This is a wonderful way to start incorporating herbs into your daily meals and snacks!