Health Benefits of Tormentil

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Tormentil Quick Facts
Name: Tormentil
Scientific Name: Potentilla erecta
This so-called annual weed naturalized in the United States of America; especially thrives where areas have been cleared by burning, also in moist woods. Height from 1–6 ft., with thick, rough, fleshy, branching stems. The white flowers bloom from July to October, somewhat resembling the Sowthistle. The fruit, an achenium, oblong and hairy. The plant has a strong unpleasant odour and bitter, disagreeable taste.

Leaves on stalks are divided into three or five oval leaflets and toothed towards their tips. It is considered as the safe and most powerful of native aromatic astringents and for its tonic properties it is known as English sarsaparilla. All parts of plant acts as astringent especially red and woody rhizome. Externally it is brown or blackish, internally it is light brownish red. It is peculiar faint, slightly aromatic odor and strongly astringent taste.

Plant description

Tormentil is a small and rhizomatous plant which grows to the height of 1-1.5 inches on weak and slender stems and is primarily upright but occasionally procumbent. It is found throughout Eurasia in various environments including bogs, heaths, grasslands, alpine slopes and open woods. Leaves are in stem clinging rosettes consisting 3 to 5 glossy, lanceolate to wedge shaped leaflets.


Corolla is yellow, 1-1.5 cm broad and petals are four, shallowly notched, base with orange spots and 4-6 mm long slightly longer than sepals.


Leaves are alternate, basal, long stalked. Stem leaves are virtually stalkless and stipulate. Blade is palmate with five leaflets. Leaflets are obovate and only tip with toothed margins, quite glabrous on top and underside densely short haired. Stipules are large and often lobed.


As a prompt botanical in purifying the system in diseases of the blood, and discharges of bloody flux. Administered either in a strong decoction, or the alcoholic extract. It is unrivalled in accumulation of excess mucus and the many progressive disease symptoms this condition brings on. To mention a few: the common cold, allergies, hay fever, tonsilitis, cholera, dysentery, haemorrhoids, etc. It is strongly astringent and will quickly relieve pain due to its influence in arresting the discharges and effectively diminishing unwanted accumulation. It is invariably successful in summer complaints of. children, even in cases where other means have failed.

Facts About Tormentil

Name Tormentil
Scientific Name Potentilla erecta
Common/English Name Various Leaved Fleabane, Pile Wort, Tormentil, Erect cinquefoil, Tormentil, Septfoil
Name in Other Languages German: Blutwurz, Aufrechtes Fingerkraut, Blutstillendes Fingerkraut, Blutwurz, Gemeiner Tormentill, Tormentill, Aufrechtes Fingerkraut;
Danish: Tormentil;
Swedish: Blodrot;
English: Bloodroot, Cinquefoil
Plant Growth Habit Herbaceous perennial plant
Plant Size 10-30 centimetres (3.9-11.8 in) tall
Medicinal parts Root, herb
Flowering Season May to August/September
Flower Yellow, 7–11 millimetres (0.28–0.43 in) wide


Steep 1 heaped teaspoonful of the root and herb in 1 cup of boiling water for ½ hr. Prompt relief will follow when taken hot in small amounts, often. Of the tincture, ½-1 ft. dram as called for.

Homoeopathic Clinical

Tincture of whole fresh plant—Diarrhoea, Gonorrhoea, Haemorrhage, Metrorrhagia, Orchitis.

Medicinal uses

  • It is used in herbal medicine for treating dysentery, diarrhea, sore throats, irritable bowel syndrome, ulcerative colitis and colitis.
  • The plant is used externally for cuts and wounds.
  • The decoction is used as a wash for mouth ulcers, piles, infected gums and inflamed eyes.
  • Use the extracts for chapping of anus and cracked nipples.
  • It is helpful for bed wetting in children.
  • Soak a piece of lint in decoction and apply it in warts.
  • It is used to halt bleeding and smoothen skin.
  • The extracts of tormentil root are used for dental and oral hygiene, treat mild inflammation of mouth and throat and denture sores.
  • In folk medicine, add it to baths and compresses for treating poor healing of wounds, burns, frostbite and hemorrhoids.
  • Use it internally for diarrhea and stomach problems.

Culinary uses

  • Rhizomes are used to make tea.
  • Roots are boiled for long and converted into gum.


  • Excessive use causes gastrointestinal symptoms.
  • People with inflammatory and ulcerative bowel disease should avoid it.
  • Pregnant and lactating women should avoid it.






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