Bird’s Knotweed (Polygonum aviculare)
The knotweed is often found along roadsides in the temperate regions of the world. In earlier times, the herb was fed to pigs because of its nutrient content.
The bird’s knotweed is rich in tannins and also contains flavonoids (including avicularin), up to 1% silicic acid, mucilage and resin. The dried herb is used as a tea or decoction.
The astringent effect of the tannin drug is recognised, which is why it is used for inflammations of the mucous membranes of the mouth and throat and in traditional medicine also externally, for wounds and bleeding. The herbalist Kneipp recommended poultices with a decoction of bird’s knotweed for poorly healing wounds such as open legs. The medicinal plant is also used for mild catarrh of the respiratory tract. It is an ingredient in some cough teas.
In vitro studies show that knapweed is a so-called ACE inhibitor. This means that it could possibly be helpful in cases of high blood pressure and chronic heart failure.