Medicinal properties of wild rosemary

This dangerous medicinal marsh rosemary ...

"Somewhere on the hills the wild rosemary is blooming, pines are piercing the sky ..." - for many people, and not only townspeople, knowledge about this plant is limited only to these lines from a once popular song. Honestly, for a long time and I did not know this plant.

Until the first meeting in the swamp happened. Relatives invited to hike for cranberries. There were about ten of us. The road was not easy. The familiar state farm driver threw everyone in the back of the van to the edge of the forest.

Then one of the company, a connoisseur of this swamp, took us for a long time to the cranberry places. We climbed over logs across a small river with brown peaty water, then walked for a long time through the wet forest parallel to this river.

And now, under the boots, the moss began to sag, through which the water appeared. The trees ended, but unfamiliar plants started - a shrub a little more than a meter high with numerous oblong leaves. A strong, intoxicating smell emanated from the bushes.

Soon reddish threads of cranberry stalks with red berries appeared on the hummocks. We started collecting them near the fragrant bushes. I got carried away, since picking cranberries was also unfamiliar to me. Half an hour later, my head suddenly started to hurt. The relatives said that it was I who had breathed in the scent of wild rosemary, I had to immediately go further, deep into the swamp, where this bush no longer grew. We have moved to a new location. After a while, the pain went away. This is how I got to know the wild rosemary and immediately learned that it was necessary to be careful with it. The relatives explained that you need to beware, but you also need to know that skilled people treat them with various diseases.

Features of culture

So what is marsh rosemary - an enemy or a friend of man? Let's try to figure it out.

Ledum is an evergreen shrub belonging to the Heather family, as well as rhododendron... For a long time, scientists and wild rosemary attributed to rhododendrons, but then the genus Ledum was restored. It contains only a few species, of which the marsh rosemary is the most famous.

Marsh wild rosemary (Ledum palustre - lat.) it got its Russian name from the place of its main growth - marshland - in raised bogs. And its botanical name comes from the Greek word Le'dumwhich means "incense"... It is also found in coniferous forests, undergrowth and wooded peat bogs. In our country, wild rosemary is widespread in the Far East, in Eastern Siberia. It is found in swamps and forests of the North-West region, in neighboring Belarus.

It is a shrub up to 120 cm high and a bush with a diameter of up to a meter with a powerful root system extending to a depth of 40 cm, it has numerous branches covered with long alternate leaves, slightly curved inward. They are smooth bright green above, rough below. Numerous white flowers up to 1 cm in diameter are collected in 15-25 pieces in umbrellas. Ledum blossoms in May-June. Flowers, leaves and stems of this plant give off a strong odor.

Medicinal properties of wild rosemary

All useful and harmful properties of wild rosemary are determined by the substances that make up the flowers, leaves, stems and roots of this plant. Usually, for medicinal purposes, the leaves and young stems of marsh rosemary are harvested.

For example, the leaves contain glycoside arbutin, which is an antiseptic, it can relieve inflammation. At the same time, experts warn that this glycoside can also act as a carcinogen.

Contained in them and tanninswith astringent, antimicrobial and hemostatic properties.

The leaves and stem of rosemary contains essential oil. This is precisely the presence of volatile substances - palustrol, ledol, cymola and others that make up this oil, and explains the strong balsamic aroma emanating from the bush in the swamps, as well as its bitter-burning taste. Experts confirm that the headache I had while picking cranberries was not accidental. This affected the effect of the rosemary scent - the evaporation of its essential oil. They argue that this effect can also cause severe dizziness. Beekeepers need to remember: if during the flowering of wild rosemary the bees actively work on its flowers, collecting nectar, then wild rosemary honey can turn out, which is dangerous for people, up to poisoning.

In addition to the substances mentioned above, in marsh wild rosemary were found flavonoids (substances with high activity that affect the production of enzymes and other functions in the body), organic acids, gum, vitamins and resinous substances.

Due to the presence of essential oil and other substances, wild rosemary in folk and traditional medicine is used in various preparations as an expectorant, enveloping, antitussive agent. For example, the harvested leaves of wild rosemary in the form of infusions and in herbal collections are used for diseases of the respiratory system, as well as a diuretic, antiseptic and disinfectant.

Anyone who decides to start harvesting medicinal raw materials for marsh rosemary should be careful, given the impact of its stupefying aroma. You cannot stay in the thickets of this plant for a long time, you should not go to the swamp alone. The flowers of wild rosemary are harvested during flowering in May-June, and the collection of leaves, more precisely, young non-lignified tops of stems with leaves, is better to postpone for a time after its flowering. The aroma will then be slightly weaker. And dry raw rosemary, like everyone else other medicinal plants, you need under a canopy, in a ventilated area, but not in a residential area!

And in pharmacies you can find dried wild rosemary raw materials, packaged in packs of 100 grams. It can be used to prepare infusions, tinctures and decoctions.

The pharmaceutical industry also produces Ledin tablets on the basis of wild rosemary, which are recommended for the treatment of laryngitis, tracheitis, bronchitis, bronchopneumonia, pneumonia, tuberculosis, accompanied by frequent dry cough. In the presence of sputum, it is recommended to take them together with expectorants. Manufacturers note that allergic reactions are possible.

Infusion of wild rosemary

Two tablespoons of crushed raw materials are poured into an enamel bowl and poured with a glass (200 ml) of boiling water, covered with a lid and placed in a water bath for 15 minutes. Then it is cooled at room temperature for about an hour and filtered. The volume of the liquid is brought to the original (200 ml), adding cold boiled water. Store the finished infusion in the refrigerator for no more than two days.

It is taken warm 2-3 times a day, a quarter of a glass after meals as an expectorant and bactericidal agent for chronic bronchitis and other pulmonary diseases accompanied by cough.

Wild rosemary decoction

One teaspoon of crushed wild rosemary raw materials should be poured with 1 glass of water and put on the stove. After boiling water, keep on fire for one minute. After that, remove the broth from the stove and leave for half an hour, then strain it. Take a decoction for coughs, colds, bronchitis, 1 tablespoon three times a day after meals.

Tincture of wild rosemary on alcohol

Pour the wild rosemary raw materials with vodka in a ratio of 1: 5 and leave to infuse in a warm, dark place for 2-3 days. The resulting tincture is used for rubbing with rheumatism, radiculitis, arthritis.


Since wild rosemary is a poisonous plant, then when using it, you must strictly observe the intake rates indicated in the recipes. In case of an overdose, excitation is possible, and in severe cases, depression of the central nervous system. Poisoning symptoms - headache, dizziness, increased excitability.

Ledum preparations should not be taken by pregnant and lactating women, as well as with internal bleeding.

Before you consider taking any medications with rosemary, consult your doctor. It is never superfluous.

E. Valentinov
Photo by Olga Rubtsova

Contraindications, harm of wild rosemary

Ledum has a high healing efficiency. But he can both cure and harm a person.

  1. This plant contains toxic substances. Therefore, it is not recommended for women in position and for mothers who are breastfeeding, as well as for children under 14 years of age.
  2. In large quantities, wild rosemary herb has a detrimental effect on the central nervous system, causing paralysis of the intestines, disrupting breathing and heartbeat.
  3. Drug overload can lead to unwanted results. Take medication only under the supervision of your doctor. If you experience symptoms such as dizziness and irritability after receiving a certain amount of medications that contain rosemary, stop using it immediately.
  4. Animals can get gastroenteritis if they accidentally eat too many rosemary twigs.
  5. The nectar collected by bees from wild rosemary flowers in spring is also poisonous.

You need to be very careful when harvesting wild rosemary raw materials. It is recommended to stay in nature, where this shrub grows, no more than 1.5 hours, otherwise the acrid smell emitted by wild rosemary may cause a headache.

Dry twigs 15 - 20 cm long in a well-ventilated area. It is necessary to store dry rosemary in jars with very tight lids,

Ledum is used not only in traditional medicine, but also in homeopathy, cosmetology, and modern medicine. Many pharmacies sell rosemary preparations. You can buy essential oil, ice pills, a box of dried rosemary, breast collection, which includes this controversial potion.


Calamus marsh has contraindications for high acidity of gastric juice. In case of emergency, you can enter it in a carefully balanced collection, which includes herbs that extinguish the increased secretion of hydrochloric acid.

Ancient sources indicate that you cannot use calamus in case of acute inflammation of the kidneys.

Calamus infusion is undesirable in the acute phase of gastric ulcer.
It is known that calamus powder, taken "at the tip of a knife", suppresses the most persistent heartburn. Some people are too lazy to grind the root and chew it, which can cause severe vomiting.

You also need to know that the extract calamus lowers blood pressure - this is a reminder for hypotonic patients.

Contraindications for use

Ledum is a plant with a very rich chemical composition. Numerous substances contained in various parts of this plant have beneficial properties and have a beneficial effect on the human body, but only if the appropriate dosages are observed. Thus, excessive consumption of rosemary essential oils has a detrimental effect on the human body. Meanwhile, almost all parts of this plant contain essential oils. The only exception is its root.

The most important thing in the use of drugs based on wild rosemary is to consult with a specialist in time, who will indicate the recommended rate of the taken decoction or tincture. Neglecting the doctor's recommendations can lead to poisoning, overdose and other negative consequences for the human body.

The permissible norm for taking wild rosemary is about 0.5 grams for powder and no more than one tablespoon for decoction or tincture. The plant is very poisonous.

In addition, wild rosemary is not recommended for persons with special sensitivity to the substances that make up the plant.

The use of wild rosemary by children at an early age should be minimized - toxic effects are possible. It is best to give children a collection of herbs, one of which is wild rosemary.

Peculiarities of wild rosemary

Ledum is a shrub or shrub that is a perennial. Its height varies from 0.5 to 1.2 m. Its rhizome is superficial and branched, and short processes extend from it. Thin branching shoots are quite strong and tough. Depending on the type, the stems are ascending, erect, and also creeping. While the shoots are young, they are painted in a greenish-olive shade, and on their surface there is a rusty pubescence. After some time, a smooth dark bark appears on their surface.

Leafy plates with short petioles do not fly around throughout the year. They are alternately leathery to the touch and painted in a dark green hue. Their shape is lanceolate or elongated, the edge is bent downward, and a relief median vein stands out on the surface. If the bush is in direct sunlight for a long time, then its foliage acquires a brownish-brown tint. If you rub the leaf between your fingers, you can feel a heady, strong aroma.

Dense umbrellas are formed on last year's stems, while flowering lasts from April to June. Each flower has a short stalk. The bell-shaped calyx is formed of white oval petals. Each flower has the number of all elements in multiples of five. Pollination of flowers occurs at the expense of insects, then the formation and maturation of dry seed bolls, which have five sections, are observed. Each of them contains winged seeds of a very small size.

Pay special attention to the fact that there is poison in any of the parts of this plant! Remember to wash your hands thoroughly after any work with rosemary. But harm from a bush can be obtained without even touching it, but simply standing next to it and inhaling its smell. This can lead to feeling weak and dizzy. Despite the fact that this plant can be attributed to melliferous plants, you should know that both pollen and honey also contain poison. You can taste this honey only after prolonged heat treatment and only quite a bit.

Marsh rosemary: medicinal properties and contraindications

Marsh rosemary (Latin name Ledum palustre) Is a pharmacopoeial medicinal plant, the medicinal properties of which were studied by ancient healers.

Ledum is not a rare plant, however, it is little known to the inhabitants of the steppe regions, as it prefers to settle in swampy areas.

Application in medicine

In Tibetan medicine, wild rosemary was used in the form of infusions and as part of complex collections for diseases of the respiratory system, as well as as a diuretic, disinfectant and antiseptic. In such diseases of the respiratory tract as acute and chronic bronchitis, tracheitis, laryngitis, whooping cough, wild rosemary preparations are prescribed as an expectorant and antitussive agent.

Ledum is also used in the complex treatment of bronchial asthma and broncho-pneumonia. At the same time, the plant promotes liquefaction and rapid release of phlegm, softens cough, and has an antibacterial effect. In folk medicine, wild rosemary infusion was used as a diaphoretic, in the treatment of acute rhinitis, rheumatism, flu, gout, weeping eczema.

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