Scuttelaria lateriflora, also known as Mad Dog Skullcap, is a perennial herb in the mint family reaching up to two and a half feet in height. It has arrow-shaped, serrated leaves with blue to violet flowers, for which it is also called Blue Skullcap. It is frequently found in woodland areas and near riverbeds in most of the United States. There are hundreds of species of skullcap with various medicinal properties. Mad Dog Skullcap is most widely known for its sedative properties, which have been used to alleviate anxiety, insomnia and nervousness. It has also been reportedly used to ease menstrual cramps. It is an ingredient in herbal teas and incense.
Growing Information: Sow the seeds on the surface of a moist soil mixture that is rich in organic matter. Since skullcap likes moisture, vermiculite may help retain moisture for plants remaining in pots all season. If sowing indoors, cover your container with clear plastic to keep in humidity. Leave the plastic on until the seedlings are about half an inch. Transplant them when they are large enough to handle. If sowing outdoors, the seeds can be sown in containers at any time of the year, and they will germinate when the conditions are right. They can later be transplanted to a location in full to partial sun when they are large enough to handle. Beyond germination, little care is required.
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