I have only used the leaves on this plant, but this use of the flowers is beautiful and practical.
… or Verbascum, and sometimes mullein, as this genus (Verbascum, of which there are some 350 species…) is known in English.
I do think, though, that the German Königskerzedoes for more justice to this plant which becomes truly regal when it flowers in July:
Favouring dry, sandy soils in the sun (and therefore often to be found flourishing on wasteland), the Königskerze is not only regal, it has a tradition of healing dating back to Hippocrates. The plant has distinct emollient, demulcent and astringent properties and, while Hippocrates reccommended it for the external treatment of wounds, the Königskerzewent on to develop a tradition of treating coughs, colds and respiratory complaints.
The flowers have robust, fleshy petals making them difficult to dry and so one of the best and easiest ways of extracting their healing properties is to use them to make an infused honey in readiness for the onset of autumn…
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