Plantago Major – Herbs For Alternative Medicine


Plantago major consists of the dried leaves of Plantago major L. (Fam. Plantaginaceae) gathered during the flowering period. The plant is a native British herb, with a basal rosette of leaves which abruptly contract into long petioles, bearing a long cylindrical spike up to 50 cm tall, green-brown with lilac and yellow stamens protruding.

Claims and Common Uses:

  • Useful in lung disorders
  • Diuretic
  • Anti-hemorrhagic

Preparations: Gather during flowering throughout the summer. Dry as fast as possible as the leaves will discolor if dried improperly.

  • Dried leaves: Dose 2-4 g or by infusion
  • Liquid Extract: 1:1 in 25% alcohol. Dose 2-4 ml
  • Tincture :1:5 in 45% alcohol. Dose 2-4 ml
  • Component in seeds may be nephrotoxic so commercial products are preferable

Part Used: Leaves or aerial parts

Side Effects and Warnings of Plantago Major:

  • May interfere with the absorption of other drugs.   Wait for 30-60 minutes between dosing.
  • Bezoars (GI blockage) may form if not taken with enough fluid
  • Rarely, causes allergic reaction (anaphylaxis)