Arctium lappa | Greater Burdock
Greater Burdock, also known as Great Burdock, Edible Burdock, Lappa, or Beggar’s Buttons, is a biennial herb that was introduced to North America from Eurasia, It can be found growing in open fields, along trails, roadsides, and in disturbed soils. It often spreads prolifically and is considered an invasive species in several states.
Arctium lappa are towering plants that can reach 5 to 8 feet in height at maturity! As biennials, they send up a basal rosette of leaves in the first year and typically flower during the second year. Leaves are triangular to heart-shaped with wavy edges, and hairy undersides. The leaves are huge and get smaller as they go up the flower stalk, but the basal leaves can reach lengths of 3 to 4 feet.
In mid-summer burdock grows clusters of large, purple flowers that emerge from bristly bracts, which resemble a thistle. The fruit is covered in tiny hooked hairs or burrs, that often stick to animals and people upon contact. A robust and adaptable plant, burdock does well in any light and most soil types, although it does prefer a nitrogen rich environment.
Greater Burdock is very similar in appearance to Common Burdock, with the main difference being that Greater Burdock is typically taller and has larger leaves and flowers than Common Burdock. Like common burdock (Arctium minus) the taproots and young shoots are edible, and it is sometimes grown as a minor crop. The fresh or dried roots are collected and used in cooking, tincture making, and herbal tea blends. Extracts are sold as food supplements, to treat skin conditions such as acne, sores, and eczema. It is also considered an immune system stimulator.
Arctium lappa, Greater Burdock root is one of the original 4 herbs in the famous Essaic herbal formula, and is of course part of the improved 8 herb blend as well. The medicinal importance of this plant cannot be understated.
The Essaic herbal formula is one of the most successful formulas of all time when it comes to helping cancer patients. The formula was given to Rene Caisse, a Canadian Nurse, from a medicine man of Native American tribe in 1922. She studied, researched, and administered this formula for more than 50 years of her life.
The original 4 herb essaic formula consists of:
Sheep Sorrel (Rumex acetosella),
Burdock Root (Arctium lappa),
Slippery Elm Bark (Ulmus flilva),
Turkish Rhubarb Root (Rheum palmatum).
The additional 4 herbs are:
Blessed Thistle (Cnicus benedictus)
Kelp/Rockweed (Ascophyllum nodosum)
Red Clover (Trifolium pratense)
Watercress (Nasturtium officinale)
Some of the positive results obtained from the 8 herb Essaic formula are:
- a prolongation of life
- a decrease of nodular masses
- cessation of pain
- increased appetite (emaciated patients gained weight)
- improved sleep
- feeling of well-being
- increased energy
- a decrease in depression
- a decrease in anxiety and fear
Sun exposure: Full sun to part shade
Height: 5-6 ft
Mature width- 3-4 ft
Hardiness zones: 3-10
*Please note: We cannot ship Greater Burdock seeds to Colorado, South Dakota, or Wyoming at this time. Checkout is disabled for this product in these states.
Check out this cool video on Greater Burdock by The Herbal Jedi