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Wild Foraging Series Common Wild Plantain

Article from: August 21st, 2012


The common plantain family of plants are often found in waste areas and in mowed lawns. They grow very well in many conditions and are pretty tough plants. Although we often mow them down, poison them and try to rid our yard of these plants, our ancestors used them as a delicious herb.


The common plantain, a wild edible food

The common plantain, a wild edible food


The two most common varieties of wild plantain are the broad leaf plantain and the narrow leaf plantain. Both can be easily distinguished by their long stalk in the middle of the plant with a seed head on top. The leaves are low to the ground and grow in a round pattern around the center seed stalk. The leaves have very clearly defined veins running their length. If you tear a leaf, you can see fibers in the leaf, especially in late summer.


How to recognize common plantain in your yard

How to recognize common plantain in your yard



Wild plantain can be eaten fresh as a salad green or boiled lightly and eaten like spinach. The seeds can be cooked like cereal or dried and used like flour. You can dry the leaves or seeds and use them later. Fresh or dried leaves can be used in tea. As with most green leafy vegetables, the younger leaves are fresher and less stringy.


As a medicine, the plantain family is outstanding. It can be used for a multitude of ailments.


Externally plantain can be used to treat burns, cuts, blisters, stings, bites, sores. Relief from poison ivy can be had with a poultice of plantain leaves. Crush or grind the leaves to use them externally. You can even chew the leaves to form a compress in an emergency.


Common plantain can be used for a multitude of skin problems ranging from rashes to infections.


It has even been claimed that plantain leaf draws out snake venom and bee venom.



Plantain is a mild antibiotic and anti-inflammatory. It can lower cholesterol levels.


It can help with coughs, sooth and aid digestion, helps with diarrhea. Provides relief from swelling of the mouth and throat.


Common plantain can help cleanse the entire system.


Overall, the common plantain is a powerhouse of an herb with many medicinal and nutritional values.


You can watch the video here:
Watch the video now  Common Plantain A Wild Edible Survival Food


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Troy Reid


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