Woodroof, the Sweet, or Asperula odorata, L. an indigenous perennial, growing in woods and shady places ; where it flowers in the month of May. - This plant possesses an exceedingly grateful odour, that increases on being moderately dried: it has a sub-saline, and somewhat austere taste ; which, together with a peculiar, fine flavour, it also imparts to vinous, liquors. - According to Linnaeus, the smell of this herb, expels ticks, and other insects.
The sweet woodroof is supposed to attenuate viscid humours, and strengthen the bowels ; to remove obstructions of the liver and biliary ducts; and was formerly esteemed a medicine of great efficacy in epilepsies and palsies. - The plant is eaten by cows, horses, sheep, and goats ; having the remarkable property of increasing the milk of animals, and especially of those first mentioned. - See also Tea; p. 194.