This blog is merely to be used as an education resource for the uses of various medicinal plants for knowledge, not practice. I have no training in utilizing these plants, but am merely arranging information about them for myself and for anyone who wishes to learn from it. If you want information on how to use these plants in the treatment of illness, seek professional help from trained practitioners. I am not advising you to use these plants in the ways discussed, but am only compiling information about how they are used by others.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Cloves (Eugenia caryophyllata)

Also called Eugenia Aromatica.²

Photograph by Jorge Barrios, Wikipedia

Family: N.O. Myrtaceae²

Location: Molucca Islands, Southern Philippines²; Pemba² (an island off the coast of Tanzania); East and West Indies², Mauritius² and Brazil²; introduced to Europe 4th-6th century²; United States (as evidenced by Native American knowledge and use)

Actions: carminative, astringent², antiseptic³, topical anesthetic³, dental anodyne³, antispasmodic³

Part used: undeveloped flowers², essential oils²

"At the start of the rainy season long greenish buds appear; from the extremity of these the corolla comes which is of a lovely rosy peach colour; as the corolla fades the calyx turns yellow, then red. The calyces, with the embryo seed, are at this stage beaten from the tree and when dried are the cloves of commerce."²

The flowers must be picked before they have a chance to mature, or else they lose their aroma.² The best quality cloves are dark brown, full, and oily and can be squeezed to extract oils.² These yield more oils than cloves that are paler and dry.²

Uses (can be used as powder or tea/infusion):
- Cloves create an inner warmth, so they were often used in mulled cider (along with cinnamon, allspice and today, orange peels) by Native Americans like the Ohlone of California in the winter.¹ (infusion)

- The little stick-like extensions of the clove were jammed between the teeth and gums to ease toothache (Native American).¹

- nausea and emesis²
- flatulence²
- dyspepsia/indigestion²
- as a synergist/assistant to other medications²
- oil can increase peristalsis²
- germicide²
- effective antiseptic²
- anesthetic for cavity-ridden teeth
- expectorant to aid with phthisis and bronchial troubles²
- alkali (infusion)²
- antinausea medication³


1. Eric Nicholas, City of Pleasanton naturalist. October 2009.
3. Rain, Mary Summer. Earthway. New York: Pocket Books, 1990. Page 190.


  1. This is so cool. Thank you for educating the good people. :-)

  2. I studied anthropology with sociology at Uni and enjoyed it, so wish you well in this.

    I really like your blog too, a great way of raising awareness.

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