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Plant Family:  



Habitat & Cultivation: 

Capsella bursa-pastoris is native to Europe (ABC, 2012). It is found “growing as a weed in farmland, fallow land, and along roadsides worldwide” (ABC, 2012). Some other places it is cultivated include Intia, and temperate and warm regions around the world (ABC, 2012).

It has naturalized to the US, and can certainly be found as a common weed in many gardens.


Parts Used/Collection: 

Above ground parts


Herbal Actions: 

  • astringent

  • diuretic

  • anti-inflammatory

  • uterine tonic

  • uterine stimulant

  • emmenogogue

  • alterative

  • hemostatic

  • styptic herb




  • Cold remedy

  • Febrifuge

  • Analgesic

  • Burn dressing

  • Hemorrhoids

  • Acute cystitis

  • Heavy periods

  • Nosebleeds (topical)

  • Diuretic

  • Smooth muscle stimulant

  • Water retention

  • Hematuria

  • Diarrhea

  • Atonic dyspepsia

  • Epistaxis

  • Bleeding hemorrhoids

  • Heavy menstrual flow

  • Irregular menses

  • Postpartum bleeding

  • UTI

  • Inflammation in genitourinary tract

  • Hypertension

  • Open wound

  • bruised/strained muscles and/or joints

  • Nosebleeds


  • Avoid in people with kidney stones

  • Avoid in high concentrations. It should not be taken in doses that exceed the maximum therapeutic dosage (Milss & Bone, 2005) because the glycosinolates may cross the placenta and can be detected in breastmilk. This may interfere with the thyroid’s iodine uptake. (Riccio & Zollinger, 2018).

  • Care should be taken with long term use (Romm, A. 2010)

  • Advised to not use during pregnancy and lactation without professional advice. (Mills & Bone, 2005).

Plant Constituents:


System Affinities: 

Nervous system (depression, anxiety, nervousness), immune system (antiviral, antibacterial), integumentary system (wound healing), Cardic, Reproductive, Circulatory



sweet, warm, dry



Safety Class: 2b Interaction Class: A


Personal Experience:

Tried tincture 3x in one day, I did not feel the effects from the tincture as I had expected, however, it did make me feel alert. 




Hoffman, D. (2003). Medical Herbalism. Healing Arts Press: Vermont.


Mills, S. & Bone, K. (2005). The Essential Guide to Herbal Safety. London, England. Elsevier Churchill Livingstone.



Romm, A. (2010). Botanical medicine for women's health (p. 694). St. Louis, Mo: Churchill Livingstone/Elsevier.


American Botanical Council. (2000). St. John’s wort.



Shepherd’s Purse (Capsella bursa-pastoris) 

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