A COMMON wild plant in our corn fields. It is two feet high; the stalks are weak and often crooked; but they are thick enough, round, and of a whitish green colour. The leaves are oblong, broad, and of a fine blue green colour, not dented at all at the edges, and they grow two at every joint; the joints of the stalks where they grow, are swelled and large, and the leaves have no stalks. The flowers are white, moderately large, and prickly. They stand upon a husk which seems blown up with wind.
This is one of those plants of our own growth, that have more virtue than people imagine. The root, which is long, white, and woody, is to be gathered before the stalks rise, and dried. An infusion is one of the best remedies known for nervous complaints: it will not take place against a violent present disorder; but is an excellent preservative, taken cautiously.
The Family Herbal, 1812, was written by John Hill.