Making Motherwort Tincture

Motherwort (Leonurus cardiaca) is a heavy-hitter in the medicinal plants game.  It is used, among other things, for the heart, for anxiety, and for women’s health.  You can read more about it here.

I planted motherwort seeds last Spring.  They germinated and produced a few plants, which flowered and went to seed.

This year, I have a bumper crop of tall motherwort plants.  Due to the super-mild winter, they began to grow very early this year (I’m not sure they ever stopped) and the plants I have now are already in flower.  According to what I’ve read, this doesn’t typically happen until late summer.  I’m starting to feel this is what it’s like to live in Florida.

Since the flowering stage is considered the best time to harvest the plant to make a tincture, I’m ready to go with my snippers and 100 proof vodka.  It was morning, after the dew had evaporated.

I brought the motherwort into the kitchen and sort of pinched off the tips and leaves into smaller segments and stuffed them into a clean quart jar, not jam-packed, just full.  Once the jar was filled, I covered the plant material with vodka and put on the lid, labelled and dated it with a Sharpie and that was it.

Simple as that.

It should be ready to use starting in about six weeks.

A quart of motherwort tincture sells for $176 USD.  I used about $6 worth of vodka and the seeds were $1.40.  Plus motherwort is a good bee plant.  It also makes a terrible-tasting but medicinal tea.

I love the tiny, orchid-like blooms.

Have you used motherwort tincture?  Do you like it?

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  1. How do you use a tincture? I imagine all that vodka would make it very…potent.

  2. Adica and Martina–The dosage for this one is 1/2 to 1 teaspoon, once or twice daily, in a glass of water (or juice). Yes, we don’t want to become under the influence on motherwort tincture!

  3. Can’t speak for the medicinal effects of motherwort, but as a gardener I can tell you that it is highly invasive. So take care to harvest before the plant sets seed.

  4. I read your motherwort post…and I would love to try this remedy for my issues. I have looked for seeds…can’t find them from any of the seed sources I have. I would love to buy some from you so I can plant it here. I have mugwort growing, but that’s not used for the same things I guess. It looks the same though. Let me know if you can sell me some seeds and I can send via paypal or mail some money.

  5. Rhonda–I bought mine from fedcoseeds.com. I would give you some, but they won’t go to seed for several months and you’d miss out on this growing season. Fedco has very good prices and germination rates.

  6. This is great information! Thank you for posting the pics too. I am beginner at the medicinal herbs game but looking forward to gleaning as much information as possible from all sorts of sources!

  7. What do you mean by “it is a good bee plant”? Does it attract bees or is it good for bee stings? I am allergic to bees so I want to be sure I understand what you mean!

  8. Thanks for the post and the lovely pictures. How long do you let it infuse in the vodka before using?

  9. Liza–4-6 weeks, or longer if you have the time. Thank you for your kind words! I appreciate it very much!

  10. Cheryl–Motherwort is commonly recommended for this purpose and you certainly could make a tea of it. However, it is truly quite bitter and I find the tincture easier to take, if only because I don’t have to sip a cup of it as I would a tea. If you prefer a tea if may be possible for you to mask the flavor with other herbs and spices and perhaps honey. Let me know how it goes!