Wild Dagga Motherwort Medicinal Herb

 Leonotis leonurus (Wild Dagga, Lion's Tail)

Wild Dagga is also known as Motherwort and Lion's Tail. It is another one of the fantastic herbs to grow in the mint family.

Wild Dagga loves the heat and thrives during drought. The plants will benefit by a little supplemental watering and minimal composting for more flowering.

This is a great herb to let naturalize in the garden. It is on the top of the list for providing nectar for all of our pollinators. The birds, hummingbirds, bees and butterflies are drawn in by its wagging Lion's Tail Blooms.

I've found this herb growing 7 ft. and perhaps taller in parts of my garden. It puts on an excellent show as a tall background in the herb garden.

History of Wild Dagga

Motherwort is native to the regions of Southern Africa. It was prized by many different tribes who utilized every part of this herb for medicinal purposes.

The tribes smoked the Wild Dagga as well as make it into a brewed tea and poultices for healing.

It was applied for the treatments of snake bites and scorpion stings. They use the dried leaves, roots, stalks and flowers when making the poultice to apply to the wounds.

The tribes women sprinkle the dried herb around their dwellings to help ward off snakes, spiders and scorpions.

Medicinal Properties of Wild Dagga

For the treatment of:

  • Coughs, colds, influenza and chest infections
  • Diabetes
  • Hypertension
  • Eczema
  • Epilepsy
  • Delayed menstruation
  • Intestinal worms
  • Constipation
  • Spider bites and scorpion stings
  • An antidote for snakebite
  • Relief of Hemorrhoid's
  • Skin rashes and boils

If you are interested in growing Wild Dagga be sure to start it in full sun. Its hardiness zones are 9 through 11, but can  survive our 8B winters. It may lose its foliage during a frost, but will come back in spring.

Our Wild Dagga was started from seeds but can also be started from softwood cuttings in the spring time. Once established the plant can easily reseed and naturalize.

As fall is approaching I am beginning to take cuttings to dry indoors.

I may try sprinkling a bit around the homestead as the Native African Tribes women do in hopes to help keep the poisonous snakes, spiders and scorpions at bay.

I'm finding this a fascinating herb, well worth the effort to grow in our southern region. I hope you will enjoy it too.

Pamela Kimsey
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One thought on “Wild Dagga Motherwort Medicinal Herb

  1. I will definitely be researching more about Wild Dagga because I am always searching for Hypertension and Eczema remedies. You have really got me excited about this medicinal herb.

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