Friday, January 11, 2013
Between the common calamint and lesser calamint, the lesser is the stronger, a great illustration of the concept “less is more”. Both plants are not suitable for use by pregnant women, as they may cause miscarriage.
The part used for medicine is the leaves, which are gathered in July just before flowering, and dried for later use. Lay them out in a single layer out of the sun in an airy place and check them every couple of days, turning them as they dry until they are ready to store in a sealed airtight container out of the light.
Make a standard infusion by pouring 2 1/5 US cups (1 UK pint) boiling water over 1oz (30g) dried or 3 handfuls of fresh leaves. Leave to stand for at least 15 minutes to 4 hours, then strain and use. The dosage is up to 1 cup a day, split into 3 doses.
Calamint can be used to treat flatulence (‘gas‘ or ‘wind‘), painful periods, depression, insomnia, as an expectorant for non-productive coughs, to reduce fevers and induce sweating.