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Masterwort (Peucedanum ostruthium syn. Imperatoria ostruthium)


Stomach-effective, calming, pain-relieving, urinary and sweat-inducing, appetite-promoting, menstruation-promoting, potency-enhancing, milk-promoting, skin-cleansing, anti-cancer, blood pressure-lowering, metabolism-stimulating

Areas of application:

Stomach complaints, liver, gall bladder, infectious diseases, flu viruses, bacteria, plague and other epidemics, colds, catarrh, preventive for hay fever, improves the immune system, asthma, bronchitis, high blood pressure, stroke, fever, paralysis of the limbs, urinary retention, worms, high cholesterol, age-related problems such as hearing loss, menopause, poisoning, bleeding gums, draws pus from wounds, ulcers, abscesses, in the event of impending blood poisoning, swollen neck glands, inflammation of the mucous membranes, epilepsy, wounds, dropsy, toothache

Plant parts used:

Leaves, roots

Collection time:

Leaves before flowering, roots in spring or autumn

To find:

At higher altitudes, on limestone and pebble soils, in damp places next to mountain streams. Masterwort is often protected and may not be collected everywhere.


Terpenes, coumarin derivatives, fats, oils, essential oils, resins, tannins


☕ Tea: Pour 1/4 liter of water over 1 teaspoon of dried root, heat to the boil and let it steep a little. Strain and drink 3 cups daily. Carry out a 3-week treatment to heal the liver and gallbladder.

Masterwort is a perennial plant and can grow to a height of 30 to 100 cm. It smells of carrot and celery. The plant has a rhizome that is thick, spindle-shaped, brown and milky. The stem is upright, round, grooved, hollow on the inside and bare on the outside, except under the umbels, where it is covered in hairy, downy hairs. The leaves are grass-green and bare or have bristly, downy hairs on the underside and bristly ciliate on the edge. The leaves can grow up to 30 cm long and 34 cm wide. The leaves at the bottom of the stem are often almost twice trifoliate and the first order sections are stalked and deeply trifoliate (almost to the base). The leaf lobes are elliptical to lanceolate with a pointed upper end. The blade edge is unevenly doubly serrated with a coarse spiny tip on the teeth. The upper leaves are usually only three-edged, sitting on large, inflated, almost membranous sheaths. The double umbel inflorescence is relatively large and flat. A double umbel has up to 50 umbel rays, they are thin, angular, unequal in length and finely hairy on the inside. The umbels have many flowers. The flower stalks are very thin and almost smooth. The few bracts are bristly, herbaceous and almost smooth. The white or reddish petals are broadly obovate. The tip of the petals is ridged and has a folded, pointed lobe. The texture is almost smooth, with very weak or blunt papillose. The flowering period is from June to August. The ripe schizocarp, called a double achene, is white-yellowish with a brownish disc.

🛑 Skin contact with the juice of this plant is said to cause photosensitivity and/or dermatitis in some people. It is also said to contain the alleged "psychotroph" myristicin.

Masterwort is a component of witches' powders for incense. "The root of all roots" was considered a panacea until the beginning of the 20th century, especially for cancer.

Masterwort was also a component of the Spiritus carminativus Sylvii. It was also contained in Orvietan, a panacea made up of fifty-four different herbs. (Wikipedia)

In the kitchen, masterwort leaves can be used as a spice, for example in meat soups, potato soups, salads, vegetable dishes and tomatoes. You can also make herb butter from them. The root is used for desserts, liqueurs and various alcohols.

Hildegard von Bingen: It is good for fever. Anyone who has a fever, whatever it may be, should take masterwort and crush it and pour half a cup of wine over it, up to the top pieces. So let him steep overnight and in the morning pour wine over it again and drink it on an empty stomach for three or five days and he will be healed.

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