ALOYSIA TRIPHYLLA =
LIPPIA CITRIODORA =
Lemon verbena, Aloysia citriodora, is a shrub native to temperate or subtropical areas of South America (Peru, Chile, Argentina, Paraguay).
It is quite common in the pre-Andean regions where it has several local appellations: cedron, hierba luisa or verbena de Indias.
It was introduced in southern Spain in the 17th century, and then spread to southern Europe, North Africa and the USA.
Lemon or fragrant verbena does not grow in cold or dry regions; it can reach 2 to 4 m high; the leaves, lanceolate with a marked apex and a smooth or slightly serrated margin, are whorled in groups of 2 to 4, most often 3 (hence the name triphylla).
The terminal inflorescence in fairly loose crown is made of bilabiate pink or lilac flowers of small size.
The fruit that does not always reach maturity is a drupe that contains two seeds.
When the weather is hot lemon verbena gives off a strong citrus odor; crumpled leaves also have this characteristic lemon scent.
CHEMICAL COMPOSITION AND PROPERTIES
Very used in some South American countries where you can easily find "cedron" tea bags.
Green or dried leaves can also be used:
- one to two teaspoons of dry leaves per cup of hot water, infuse a minute.
- For 1 liter of infusion count 20g of dry leaves or 80 g of fresh leaves.
Lemon verbena infusion is useful:
- to facilitate digestion especially in case of chronic dyspepsia,
- to facilitate the appearance of sleep: in this case you can double or triple the dose of leaves (3 to 5 teaspoons for a cup of hot water) and flavor with honey,
- to calm digestive disorders with cramps in addition to a more specific treatment,
- to quench thirst in general and as sudorific in case of fever,
-as a drink of "comfort" knowing that it has in addition a power as anti-free radicals
The essential oil of lemon Verbena is not always easy to find and can be falsified by synthetic citral.
Example of dosage:
ORALLY (2 to 6 drops a day) :
- calming and antidepressant,
- stomachic and facilitating digestion,
- seful in case of gastrointestinal infection in addition to antibiotic treatment or other essential oils; there is not yet a clinical study, to my knowledge, on the use of this essential oil of lemon verbena to treat peptic ulcer.
- A few drops of essential oil pure or mixed with vegetal oil, light massage for its calming, relaxing effect.
- In Argentina the LIQUOR of "cedron" (aperitif and digestive) is prepared as follows:
- 60 ° ethyl alcohol: 600 g
- Dry leaves of lemon verbena: 60 g
- Sugar: 350 g
- Water: 165 g
Macerate the leaves in alcohol for 9 days, filter and then add the half-liter of sugar syrup.
To be stored in an airtight glass bottle.
A lemon balm from the southern hemisphere
Lemon verbena is a decorative and medicinal shrub; its leaves contain essential oil and phenolic compounds that combine to make it a plant facilitating digestion, the onset of sleep, detoxifying the body by trapping free radicals.
It is a pleasant drink with a lemony scent..
Copyright 2019 : Dr Jean-Michel Hurtel