Butternut Juglans cinerea
- Common Names
- Butternut , White walnut, Lemon walnut
- Botanical Name
- Juglans cinerea
Medicinal Uses & Benefits of Butternut
- Medicinal Uses: * Constipation
- Properties: * Analgesic * Hepatic * Laxative * Styptic * Vermifuge
- Parts Used: Inner Bark
- Constituents: bark:juglone, tannin
How to Use: Butternut
Butternut is a close relative of the black walnut and the two are often combined in herbal preparations. Herbalists use the inner bark as a gentle laxative. Butternut does not cause the cramping that stronger laxatives such as Cascara sagrada 1
Preparation Methods & Dosage :Butternut bark may be taken as a tea, or powdered to put in capsules. Chopped bark can be tinctured.
- Flowers:Inconspicous, catkin, yellow-green flowers appear with the new leaves
- Plant Class:Diciduous Tree
- Leaves: Opposite and compound, pinnate, yellow green with 11-17 leafs per stem
- Fruit: Similar to black walnuts, but more eliptical, like small, green-tinged lemons.
- Bark: Light grey, divided into broad ridges. The inner bark is the part used in herbal medicine.
- Preferred Habitat:In rich woods,along streams in well-drained soil.
- Flowering Season:Sping
- Distribution:Native to the Eastern US, from Canada south to the mountains of Georgia
Regional Traditions :North America *
History and Traditions & FolkloreIn Appalachia, an oil expressed from fresh butternut has been used to expel tapeworms. Early American settlers may have learned how to use butternut from the Iroquois who were observed using the butter as a form of toothache relief. Native Americans also applied the bark to the skin to treat rheumatism and headaches. Both the settlers and the Indians use the butternut sap as a tonic. 1
- Gaea and Shandor Weiss, Growing and Using the Healing Herbs(1985)