Holy Vitex (Abraham's tree) - vitex agnus-castus l.
Verbenaceae family - Verbenaceae
Botanical characteristic. A shrub or small tree that grows wild on the banks of ponds, mountain slopes, in river valleys in groups or small thickets. In culture, both ornamental and honey plants are grown.
Leaves oppositely palmate with 3-7 leaves, without stipules. Flowers with a five-membered perianth turning into a tube. Calyx is fast-leaved, has a tubular shape with underdeveloped five teeth. Four stamens protruding high above the corolla. The color of the corolla is pale blue. Flowers are collected in a dense inflorescence. It blooms in May - June, bears fruit in July - August. The fruit is a drupe, edible.
Used parts of the plant. Medicinal raw materials are leaves, flowers, fruits, branches, rarely bark. Raw materials are harvested in the usual way: flowers during flowering, branches and leaves during the entire vegetation period of the plant, bark in spring or autumn, fruits - as they ripen. Raw materials are dried in air, fruits - in dryers at a temperature not exceeding 40 ° С.
Chemical composition. All parts of the plant contain iridoids: agnoside; flavonoids: aucubin; alkaloids, tannins, vitamins, trace elements, essential oil.
The fruit contains a fatty oil, in its composition organic acids: formic, acetic, propionic, butyric, valerianic, caproic.
Application. Fresh juice of a flowering plant is used in homeopathy, mainly for impotence, depression, nervous diseases, and the termination of breast-feeding of infants.
A decoction of branches and fruits - with gonorrhea; in Italy, as a contraceptive. Flowers in Central Asia and the Caucasus - with various skin diseases.
In the experiment, tincture of the fruit increases the function of the sex glands. The infusion of flowers and leaves has a lactogenic effect and exhibits antibacterial activity.
In folk medicine, decoction and tincture of fruits, leaves and bark have long been used to treat diseases of the liver, spleen, infertility, mastopathy, myoma in women, impotence in men, and malaria.
Fruits are used as a spice, a substitute for pepper.
- For infusion, take 20 g of leaves and flowers, pour 200 ml of boiling water, insist on a water bath for 15 minutes, cool for 45 minutes, without removing from the bath, filter. Take 1/3 cup 2-3 times a day before meals.
- For a decoction, 15 g of chopped fruits or bark is filled with 200 ml of boiling water, insisted on a boiling water bath for 30 minutes, cooled for 10 minutes, filtered. Take 2 tbsp. tablespoons 3-4 times a day before meals.
- To get tinctures from fruits or bark, chopped raw materials are taken, poured with 70% alcohol at a rate of 1: 5, insist 15 days. Take 30-40 drops per reception, gradually increasing to 50-60 drops, before meals 2 times a day.