Inula helenium L


Perennial plant that might grow as high as an average adult human being when the soil provides the nutrients and requirements for the plant to completely develop; it’s considered one of the largest plants. Leaves are big, oval-shaped, pointy and white on the back with pronounced veins. Leaves are soft at touch with a toothed perimeter. The basal ones are larger and might be up to 1 meter long. It belongs to the Compositae family.

Blooming takes place in May. Harvesting is to be done until mid-autumn and plants older than two years of age are to be selected, from them the root and rhizome are taken. The rhizome should be cut in fine slices to facilitate their further desiccation. This process of desiccation should always be performed at temperatures lower than 40° C and in a well-ventilated area. The root releases a strong and penetrating odor.

It is called Helenium as the legend states the plant sprang from the tears of Helena of Troy.

Part used

The root and the rhizome are used.


Internal use

  • Respiratory disorders: irritative cough, tracheitis, bronchitis, asthma, etc.
  • Biliary deficiency.
  • Lack of appetite.
  • Intestinal worms.
  • Menstrual disorders. Dysmenorrhea.
  • Skin fungi.

External use

Eczemas, hives, wounds, ulcers.


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