From the distance you think you are looking at a sea of yellowish-orange flowerheads hovering over richly green pinnate leaf rosettes. A closer look reveals that the flowers are actually yellow and turn orange-brown as they fade. Kidney Vetch can reach a height of 15 to 35 cm (6 to 14 inches). The stems are frequently prostrate but also often raise themselves upwards presenting to the onlooker the dense clusters of yellow papillonaceous flowers which can be seen from April to June. A striking feature of the plant is that all parts are softly hairy. The chalk-loving plant is found on untilled fields and clover fields, by the wayside and on sunny slopes but never where the soil is overfertilized. A special feature of Kidney Vetch is the marked variability of its appearance depending on the site, an expression of its pronounced adaptability.
Have small amounts of saponins and tannins, xanthophyll, organic pigments.
Kidney vetch is a medicinal plant. Flower and herb decoction is used for mouth wash, in case of dental inflammation, tea promotes the excretion of urine, helps with disorders of the nervous system, in case of insomnia, and diabetes. Fresh juice is used to treat difficult-to-heal, abscessing wounds.
Kidney vetch is a medicinal plant, it helps when it is necessary to “cleanse the body” – in skin diseases to “cleanse the kidneys and the liver”, washes out the bile from the body. Decoction of flowers and herbs is used to rinse the mouth in case of dental inflammation, the tea stimulates the excretion of urine, helps with nervous system disorders, insomnia, diabetes, tea is drunk to relieve stomach pain.
As the specific name vulneraria (Vulnus = wound) indicates, Kidney Vetch is used in traditional medicine for the treatment of wounds. It is also sometimes used in cough-relieving teas, in the treatment of frostbite and sore throat and for blood cleansing. It generally promotes the elimination processes of the body.
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