Skullcap herb is a mild, calming herb that helps alleviate anxiety, promote sleep, and soothe the nervous system. The phenolic compounds and flavones in skullcap make it an excellent anti-anxiety herb that is also a potent nerve tonic. It has a pleasant cinnamon-like aroma and berry-like flavor, making it a perfect addition to our herbal smoking blends or for those who are looking for tobacco alternatives.
This spreading perennial grows as a groundcover in the shade of trees or in damp areas. It is easy to grow and can tolerate dry soils. It produces large leaves and a long blooming period. It grows best when planted in a sunny, partly shaded location and irrigated regularly during the growing season.
In the past, skullcap was used by Native Americans for headaches, insomnia, and nervous disorders. It was also a popular emmenagogue and was often used in women’s medicine to stimulate menstruation, ease breast pain, and encourage the expulsion of the placenta after childbirth. It was also a sacred plant among the Cherokee, who used it in purification ceremonies to mark the entry of young girls into womanhood.
Modern studies have revealed many potential benefits of this herb, which is considered to be an analgesic and anti-inflammatory. It may reduce indigestion, promote restful sleep, relieve headaches, and alleviate menstrual cramps. Recent studies have also shown that baicalein, one of the phenolic compounds in skullcap, has chemoprotective properties against cancer and can help prevent neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease.