Lemon Balm
1:37 PM | Author: Atie
Melissa officinalis

Other Names: Balm, Balm mint, Blue balm, Dropsy plant, Garden balm, Sweet balm, Lemon balm, Melissa



Habitat

Lemon Balm is common throughout Europe, but mostly cultivated in the United States. It sometimes grows wild in sunny fields and along roadsides. It is a perennial and is easily cultivated by seed or root division in rich, sandy or loamy soil. The branched upright stem is square and grows to about 3 feet in height. The leaves are bright green growing in opposite pairs they are ovate and serrate. The whole plant has fine hairs and a lemony scent when crushed. The flowers are yellow-white to rose colored or even bluish, two lipped, bilabiate they grow in clusters at the joints or some times on small branches at the joints. Lemon Balm blooms from about July to August. Gather the leaves flowers and stems as soon as the flowers begin to open.


Properties

Lemon Balm is edible and medicinal. Fresh leaves can be added to salad or used in egg dishes and can be used to make sauces for fish, poultry and pork. Dried or fresh the whole plant is used to make cool refreshing drinks or warm relaxing teas. Used in alternative medicine the leaves and young flowering shoots are antibacterial, antispasmodic, antiviral, carminative, diaphoretic, digestive, emmenagogue, febrifuge, sedative, and tonic. Balm contains a volatile oil citral and citronella which is strongly antispasmodic and aids in calming nerves, relieving menstrual cramps, insomnia, depression, hyperthyroidism, upset stomach, and colic in babies. Leaf tea is good for fevers, colds, and headache. Fresh crushed leaves are applied to wounds and insect bites. The essential oils in the fresh plant, particularly citronella make it a most effective insect repellent when crushed and rubbed on skin or clothes. Research has shown that the plant contains polyphenols, it can help significantly in the treatment of cold sores and combat the herpes simplex virus. Added to bath it relieves muscle tension and soothes irritated skin. The oil is often added to skin preparations and perfumes. The essential oil is used in aromatherapy and is very pleasant used in potpourris.

Lemon Balm can help significantly in the treatment of cold sores and combat the herpes simplex virus. Added to bath it relieves muscle tension and soothes irritated skin. The oil is often added to skin preparations and perfumes. The essential oil (which is quite expensive and often adulterated with lemon or lemongrass) is used in aromatherapy and is very pleasant used in potpouri.

This entry was posted on 1:37 PM and is filed under , , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

0 comments:

DISCLAIMER

There is absolutely no assurance that any statement contained or cited in an article on this site touching on
medical matters is true, correct, precise, or up-to-date. The majority of articles on this site is written,
in part or in whole, by nonprofessionals based on information taken from various sources in the internet and
general media. Even if a statement made about medicine is accurate, it may not apply to you or your symptoms,
as treatment varies from person to person. The information provided on this site is, at best, of a general nature
and cannot substitute for the advice of a medical professional (for instance, a qualified doctor/physician, nurse,
pharmacist/chemist, and so on.