Europeans settlers brought Ground ivy, commonly known as Creeping Charlie, to the United States, because it grew quickly and provided food that was easily stored and helpful in the prevention of scurvy. It is a low growing plant that is found in moist shady areas, along paths, under trees and along roadsides. It’s a member of the mint family and has a square stem which grows up to two feet in length. The leaves ...are heart shaped, dark green and sometimes have a purple tint. The vine flowers in March.
Ground Ivy contains a volatile oil which aids in relieving congestion and inflammation of mucous membranes associated with colds, stuffy noses, respiratory flu symptoms, and sinusitis. It has a solidifying effect on the bowel system is very useful for gastrointestinal flu. A medicinal tea is used to treat digestive disorders, gastritis, acid indigestion, diarrhea, bloating, colic and is an appetite stimulant. It is beneficial for liver, urinary tract and kidney function.
Ground-Ivy is being studied for use in preventing Leukemia, Bronchitis, Hepatitis, many kinds of cancer, and HIV. Although results are not conclusive, it is being used as an antidote for lead poisoning.
It is an Anti-allergenic, Antibacterial, Anti-flu, Antihistaminic, Anti-inflammatory, Antioxidant, Antiseptic, Antispasmodic, Antiviral, Expectorant, Immune-stimulant, and Sedative. Some of the plant constituents are cineole, alpha-pinene, apigenin, beta-sitosterol, borneol, caffeic-acid, ferulic-acid, hyperoside, iodine, luteolin, menthol, oleanolic-acid, rosmarinic-acid, rutin, ursolic-acid.
Tea is made from the fresh or dried leaves. It has a high Vitamin C content it is a great addition to soups, stews and vegetable dishes. Leaves can be boiled, strain and used to clean scratches, scrapes and abrasions.
This mild, but effective herb is safe for small children. When they have fevers and chest colds, the high Vitamin C content is helpful in their recovery. Ground ivy tea or juice is well tolerated and can be used by all people, young and old.