Clary sage

Botanical Name :Salvia sclarea
Family: Lamiaceae
Genus: Salvia
Species: S. sclarea
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Lamiales

Common Name : Clary sage

Habitat :Clary sage  is native to the northern Mediterranean, along with some areas in north Africa and Central Asia.

Description:
clary sage  is a biennial or short-lived herbaceous perennial herb. It grows to a height of  1 to 1.3 ft (0.30 to 0.40 m) , with square stems that are covered in hairs. The leaves are approximately 1 ft (0.30 m) long at the base, .5 ft (0.15 m) long higher on the plant. The upper leaf surface is rugose, and covered with glandular hairs. The flowers are in verticils, with 2-6 flowers in each verticil, and are held in large colorful bracts that range in color from pale mauve to lilac or white to pink with a pink mark on the edge. The lilac or pale blue corolla is approximately 1 in (2.5 cm), with the lips held wide open. The cultivar S. sclarea ‘Turkestanica’ bears pink stems, petiolate leaves, and white, pink-flecked blossoms on spikes to 30 inches tall (75 cm).
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Medicinal Uses:
The plant has a lengthy history as a medicinal herb, and is currently grown for its essential oil.
Like its relative sage, clary tea, the leaf juice in ale or beer, was recommended for many types of women’s problems, including delayed or painful menstruation.  It was once used to stop night sweating in tuberculosis patients.  An astringent is gargled, douched and poured over skin wounds.  It is combined with other herbs for kidney problems.  The clary seeds form a thick mucilage when soaked for a few minutes and placed in the eye, helps to removed, small irritating particles.  A tea of the leaves is also used as an eyewash.  Clary is also used to reduce muscle spasms.

It is used today mainly to treat digestive problems such as gas and indigestion.  It is also regarded as a tonic, calming herb that helps relieve premenstrual problems.  Because of its estrogen-stimulating action, clary sage is most effective when levels of this hormone are low.  The plant can therefore be a valuable remedy for complaints associated with menopause, particularly hot flashes.

It is also used in aromatherapy for relieving anxiety and fear, menstrual-related problems such as PMS and cramping, and helping with insomnia

Other Uses:
The distilled essential oil is used widely in perfumes and as a muscatel flavoring for vermouths, wines, and liqueurs.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salvia_sclarea
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_C.htm
http://www.gapphotos.com/imagedetails.asp?imageno=222286

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