Plant Family: Equisetaceae
Perennial rhizome alternates annually between a photosynthentic, sterile green stalk, and a strobilus, “cone” stalk bearing reproductive spores.
Habitat & Cultivation:
Horsetail is a dimorphic perennial plant common throughout the temperate northern hemisphere in Asia, Europe, and North America. Two distinct chemotypes have been identified, one from Europe and the other from Asia and North America, which can be differentiated chemically by the detection of certain characteristic flavonoids unique to each chemotype. Horsetail has been found to act as a sort of filter in riparian and wetland ecosystems, absorbing insecticides and general contaminants and promoting the general health and resilience of an ecosystem. This is very similar to horsetail’s action in the human body, where it has anti-inflammatory, astringent, diuretic, tissue tonic, and vulnerary properties. In both natural and human ecosystems, horsetail filters and soothes.
Horsetail consists of the fresh or dried, green, sterile stems of E. arvense L. The fertile stems are produced in early spring and are non-photosynthetic, while the green sterile stems start to grow after the fertile stems have wilted and persist through the summer until the first autumn frosts
Connective tissue tonic
Improve strength of connective tissues (collagen & bone)
Rheumatic & genitourinary complaints
Caution with impaired cardiac and kidney function, edema from the cardiac origin, prostate cancer, children under 2 and long-term use.”Digitalis and other cardiac glycosides may be potentiated due to potassium loss secondary to diuresis.” (Marciano, M., & Vizniak N. A., 2018).
Alkaloids (nicotine, palustrine, and palustrinine)
Flavonoids (isoquercitrin and equicertrin)
Sterols (cholesterol, isofucosterol, campesterol)
Minerals: potassium, calcium
Pitta and Kapha
Avoid use in Vata or formulate with Vata decreasing herbs
Horesetail - Equisetum arvense L.
Pregnancy category B2. According to Mills & Bone (2005) there have been no increases in frequency of fetal malformation, or harmful effects seen with limited used during pregnancy.
Lactation category C: compatible with breastfeeding and lactation (Mills & Bone, 2005).
Hot decoction, it had a light aroma to it, reminded me of seaweed minus the salt. It had a very strong flavor that I did not care for. I did notice a higher output the next morning.
American Botanical Council. (2000). Fenugreek seed. Accessed online at www.herbalgram.org.
Mills, S. & Bone, K. (2005). The essential guide to herbal safety. London, England: Elsevier Churchill Livingstone
Wani, S. A., & Kumar, P. (2016). Fenugreek: A review on its nutraceutical properties and utilization in various food products. Journal of the Saudi Society of Agricultural Sciences. doi:10.1016/j.jssas.2016.01.007
Horsetail (Equestetum arvense)