Broadleaf Plantain: A Wonderfully Edible and Medicinal Weed


| 7/14/2020 10:46:00 AM


 

Broad-leaf Plantain, or Plantago major, is a common perennial ‘weed’ found across North America. I’m sure you have seen this unassuming little plant in your yard, along the roadside or at a local park. Plantain grows well in poor soil, and can often be found coming up along sidewalks or in heavily traveled areas. At our farm, this little plant grows happily along our dirt driveway where the soil is compacted and heavily traveled. While it may be deemed an enemy by those who want a pristine lawn- plantain is a truly wonderful medicinal plant that is easy to find and identify and offers a wide range of health benefits.

Plantain leaves are oval shaped and easily identified by their 5-7 veins growing parallel out from the center. If you pick a leaf, you will see stringy fibers- like those in celery. It grows in rosettes, with many leaves growing out from a central shaft and can become a ground cover where allowed.

The flowers of plantain grow straight up, like little green spears, on leafless stalks. While they are not showy or fragrant- they do provide important food for honeybees and native pollinators.





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