Rupturewort contains herniarin and chemicals that may help stop spasms and help with eliminating excess water from the body. It has an anti-spasmodic effect on the bladder and is traditionally used to treat urinary tract infections (UTI), cystitis and kidney stones.

Herniaria glabra or Rupturewort is an evergreen perennial in most of Australia, but is treated as a bi-annual or annual in very cold regions of the world. It reaches only a few centimetres high and may spread outwards from 30 to 50cm, forming a small, ground cover. The leaves are soft and deep green, releasing a musky fragrance when squashed. It flowers in summer, but the flowers are barely noticeable. In cold regions of the world, the leaves may turn a bronze rust colour as the weather cools.

The Herniaria genus consists mostly of annual flowering plants and belongs to the family Caryophyllaceae. H. glabra is related to carnations and dianthus. This genus is native to Asia, Eurasia, Africa and some parts of Europe, but has been introduced to North America. Usually plants in this genus form a mat like ground cover for a short period but this may be dependent upon local weather conditions. This plant is still quite uncommon but is growing in popularity.

Rupturwort is also called Green Carpet due to the plant’s spreading nature and soft texture underfoot. It may go by many common names including, Smooth Rupturewort in North America and Europe, Bruckkraut, Flax Weed, Herniaire Hirsute, or even plain Herniary. The traditional and scientific names are derived from an early belief that the plant was useful for curing hernias. However, the hernias in question were hernias or ruptures of the skin, such as cuts and abrasions, rather than internal hernias.


Preparation / Dosage

Put a teaspoon of rupturewort into a 200ml cup of boiled water. Cover it and let it brew for 10 minutes. Strain and drink a cup 2-3 times per day.

Rupturewort contains herniarin and chemicals that may help stop spasms and help with eliminating excess water from the body. It has an anti-spasmodic effect on the bladder and is traditionally used to treat urinary tract infections (UTI), cystitis and kidney stones.

A poultice may be made from the whole plant and used externally for healing ulcers. The whole plant is astringent, diuretic and expectorant and should be gathered when in flower. It has also been used for lung disorders, nerve pain, gout, arthritis, fluid retention, muscle and joint pain and for ‘purifying the blood.’ An aqueous extract is made from the plant and used as a hand cleanser.

This plant should be used with professional guidance. Rupturewort interacts with Lithium and may act as a diuretic, preventing lithium from being excreted properly. This would increase the amount of lithium in the body and doses may need to be adjusted. Please consult with your doctor if you are on this medication. Pregnant and breastfeeding women should not consume or apply rupturewort.

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