Catnip or catmint is a herbaceous plant of the Labiatae family, which easily reaches one meter high. The stem is characteristic of the family: square, sinus, and covered with a thin fuzz. The leaves are opposite each other and have a long corner, they are soft and smooth to the touch. The flowers are a bouquet at the end of the upper leaves. They are pale, almost white, slightly less than 1 cm. Long.
One grows everywhere, usually near the man, farmhouses, land, etc.. By defining it in some way, is the classic "weed" that appears everywhere, but in this case it saved its medicinal properties of its ugliness.
Flowers from June. Interested harvest the whole plant, including root. Harvesting can be done at any time of year, being careful not to scrub the floor with a lot of hands, and gives off a strong odor not pleasant, although cats like Sling on, hence its name.
In its composition has been found relatively large amounts of oil of catnip, which is made up of carvamol, thymol, alcohol and other lesser known compound. The leaves are spicy palate and leaves similar to the freshness of mint leaves, but with a rather nasty aftertaste.
Anticatarrhal plant and is considered an expectorant, useful in addition to causing or accelerating late menstruation in girls. It is also said to calm the tummy ache.
At other times enjoyed fame as a cure-all, hence it is grown in large areas, so much so that today there are still remnants of ancient cultures. This must be the reason why is now so widespread. In Catalonia there is a proverb which says: "The challenges catnip all evil." (The Nepta, tot evil creeps).
Root says that he who angers quickly taken, and there are many legends. Scientifically there are no data to say anything. What is certain is that cats, when they smell, they get frantic and wallow in it until they get tired.
Tisane. It is prepared with the crushed grass, and which would take about 30 gr. Added to 1 liter of boiling water. You should take a cup at meals. It is a nice drink by the disgusting smell that follows. So take it is not recommended except when absolutely necessary.
Wine catnip. Prefers a good sherry. It is left to macerate about 30-40 gr. Of flowering tops. In this case, the plant must gather flowers, of course. The maceration is held nine days, shaking the bottle every day. Finally, filter the wine and take a cup after the two main meals.
HABITAT: In the field, everywhere
PART USED: Root and whole plant
CASTILIAN: Hierba gatera, menta de gato
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