Black Hellebore

 


HELLEBORUS NIGER

COMMON NAME  : Christmas rose, Black hellebore

Poison! Practitioner use only

FAMILY   :        Ranunculaceae  (Buttercup family)


HABIT / GROWING:

Native to central and southern Europe. It is grown as an ornamental garden plant here. Related to indigenous H. foetidus, Bear foot (used homoepathically), and H. viridis, green hellebore.


PARTS USED :        Rhizome dried and tinctured or powdered.


TRADITIONAL & MODERN USE:

Reputedly one of the ingredients of Paracelsus' elixir of life. Enhances the sense organs : mouth, nose & eyes. Also used for heart problems. Once used for dropsy and absent menstruation but it is extremely purgative and very stimulating to the uterus. It also has narcotic properties and must be used with great care for nervous disorders, hysteria and as a last ditch purgative or in a tiny dose as an alterative. Black hellebore is a powerful stimulant for the heart and uterus, purgative, kills worms & probably abortifacient.


CONSTITUENTS:

·        Cardiac glycosides - helleborin is acrid and narcotic, helleborcin is sweetish and a poweful digitalis-like    

         cardiac stimulant.