Skullcap is a perennial native to wet, shady places in eastern North America, but the 6-24 inch plants grow well in sunny sites also. Small blue flowers bloom all summer.
Traditional Healing Uses: Skullcap has been used to strengthen the nervous system and soothe stressed nerves; as a remedy for tension, exhaustion, fatigue headaches, depression, insomnia, hysteria, seizures, epilepsy, anxiety, and irritability; and to treat hives and muscle pain caused by stress. It has also been given to recovering alcoholics, ex-smokers, and used to relieve menstrual cramping and premenstrual stress.
Harvest: Gather and dry leaves and flowering tops in late summer.
Preparation: Pour 1 cup boiling water on 1-2 teaspoons of dried herb and let it steep for 10-15 minutes, 2 times a day.
Caution: Skullcap tea may slow reflexes; avoid driving after drinking it. Drink it only occasionally, unless under medical supervision.