Galium aparine (Rubiaceae)
CLEAVERS, GOOSEGRASS, CATCH GRASS
A popular "Spring-cleansing"
tonic, cleavers has been used for centuries to purify the blood and treat
skin disease. The whole herb is now given by herbalists for eczematous
rashes, swollen lymph glands, and urinary tract problems.
A centuries-old treatment for skin diseases and blood purification,
cleavers is still a popular "spring cleansing" tonic.
Culpeper recommended it as a good remedy "to cleanse the blood and strengthen the liver,
thereby to keep the body in health, and fitting it for that change of season that is coming".
It is native to Europe, where it grows in moist waste places.
A trailing annual, it has leaves and stems covered in fine hooks that cling to anything they touch.
Iridoid coumarins, including
asperuloside; flavonoids; tannins.
Increases urine production; astringent; stimulates lymphatic drainage.
Given for eczema-type skin eruptions,
swollen lymph glands (particularly if associated with water retention), urinary infections, and kidney stones.