Skullcap: Everything You Need To Know

Skullcap: Everything You Need To Know

Skullcap, also known as hoodwort, mad-dog and helmet flower, is a perennial plant. Both the root and the aerial parts can be put to good use.

Skullcap is a member of the mint family. The herb has been used for centuries to relax and help with tension. Use our complete guide to discover how to identify skullcap.

What is Skullcap?

What is Skullcap?

Skullcap (Scutellaria lateriflora), also referred to as hoodwort, mad-dog and helmet flower, is a hardy perennial with a lot of uses. Found growing natively in the wilds of North America and Canada, skullcap is a plant that has been used since the 1700’s. Unlike many other herbal supplements, both the root and the aerial parts of skullcap can be put to good use.

However, it is not just the American continent that has been blessed with this herb. Variations of skullcap can now be found throughout Europe and Asia.

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Botany of Skullcap

Botany of Skullcap

Skullcap is a member of the mint family known as Lamiaceae. It is a hardy perennial that is thought to be native to North America, and can be found growing in marshes, meadows and other damp habitats.

The plant grows to a height of roughly 60 to 80 cm, and produces trumpet-like blue/purple flowers – each of which is just under 1cm in length. The flowers themselves do not often grow at the top of the main stem, but instead grow along the length of the plant’s side branches.

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Why You Should Use Skullcap, The Herb That Induces Relaxation

The main compounds in skullcap are:

  • Flavonoids, the main of which is scutellarin
  • Bitter iridoids, the main of which is catalpol
  • Tannins
  • Volatile Oils