Herbs & Plants

Lycopodium complanatum

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Botanical Name :Lycopodium complanatum
Family: Lycopodiaceae
Genus: Diphasiastrum
Species: D. complanatum
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Lycopodiophyta
Class: Lycopodiopsida
Order: Lycopodiales

Synonym:Diphasiastrum complanatum, American Ground Pine

Common Names:Creeping Jenny or Northern Running-pine

Habitat :Lycopodium complanatum is  native to dry coniferous forests throughout the Holarctic Kingdom.

Lycopodium complanatum   is a perennial herb spreading by means of stolons that run along the surface of the ground. Above-ground stems tend to branch within the same geometric plane (hence the specific epithet “complanatum,” meaning “same plane”).

Lycopodium complanatum, the American Club Moss, is a small mossy plant with aromatic, resinous smell and slightly turpentiny taste, the stalks hairy and the leaves close set, characteristics which have gained it the popular name of Ground Pine, as in the case of Yellow Bugle. The stem is long and creeping, only about 1/2 inch in diameter, yellowish-green, giving off at intervals erect, fan-shaped forked branches about 4 inches high, with minute scale-like leaves, leaving only the sharp tips free, the branches bearing fructification in the form of a stalked tuft of four to five cylindrical spikes, consisting of spore cases in the axils of minute bracts. The stem roots below at long intervals, the roots being pale, wiry and slightly branched.

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Lycopodium complanatum  includeds a number of other species now known to be biologically separate. As the species is currently recognized, it is known from every province and territory in Canada except Nunavut, as well as from Greenland, northern Europe, Siberia, St. Pierre and Miquelon, and the US states of Alaska, Washington, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, New York, Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota.

Medicinal Uses:
The whole plant is used, dried and powdered for infusion.

It has properties similar to the European Ground Pine, being a powerful diuretic, promoting urine and removing obstructions of the liver and spleen. It is therefore, a valuable remedy in jaundice, rheumatism and most of the chronic diseases.

A decoction of this plant, combined with Dandelion and Agrimony, is a highly recommended herbal remedy for liver complaints and obstructions.

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


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