This section of the book is from "The Complete Herbalist" by Dr. O. Phelps Brown. Also available from Amazon: The Complete Herbalist: The People Their Own Physicians By The Use Of Nature's Remedies.
MEDICINAL PARTS. The root and seeds.
Description. -- This herb has a smooth stem, from one to three feet high. The leaves are lanceolate, opposite, serrate, acuminate, and decurrent on the petiole. Flowers, terminal; florets, yellow; and fruit, a wedge-formed achenium.
History. -- This is a common weed, found in wet grounds, rich fields, swamps, and ditches, from New England to Missouri. It flowers in August. The root and seeds are employed medicinally, and may be used in decoction, infusion or tincture.
Properties and Uses. -- The root and seeds are emmenagogue and expectorant; the seeds, in powder or tincture, have been used in amenorrhoea, dysmenorrhoea, and some other uterine derangements, and an infusion of the root has proved beneficial in severe cough. It has been used with great success for palpitation of the heart, and for croup. For this latter affliction a strong infusion of the leaves, sweetened with honey, and administered in tablespoonful doses every fifteen minutes until vomiting is produced, is regarded a cure. The leaves heated to the form of a poultice and laid upon the throat and chest in cases of bronchial and laryngeal attacks from exposure to cold, etc., are very beneficial.
BIDENS BIPINNATA, or Spanish Needles, and BIDENS FRONDOSA, or Beggar Tick, can be employed, medically, the same.