Scutellaria galericulata P. Small attractive, creeping perennial with blue flowers. Flowers: August. Requires: Sun and damp soil. Height: 30cm.
The common skullcap, marsh skullcap or hooded skullcap, It is a member of the mint family. It is a wetland-loving species and grows along marshes and shorelines. Common skullcap are mainly known for their traditional use as mild anxiolytics in the form of herbal teas.
All seed varieties are grown at our farm or locally and sustainably wildcrafted by us. We gather, process, and package every seed variety we carry ourselves with love and care in small batches. We never purchase seeds from outside sources to resell to you. All of our varieties are open-pollinated, grown without the use of chemicals, hybrid-free and GMO-free.
Common Names Blue Skullcap, Mad Dog Skullcap.
Hardiness Zone 3-8.
Harvesting Once it produces its sea of delicate light blue flowers in mid August, the aerial parts of the herb can be harvested, and tinctured or infused in honey. The herb is best used fresh as the dried herb looses much of its potency.
Plant Family Lamiaceae (Mint Family)
Germination/Sowing Easy to start from seed. Seeds are started indoors in flats and the transplanted out once seedlings are sturdy. They can also be direct sown in spring.
Botanical Name Scutellaria lateriflora.
Growing/Care Plants can be cut back in fall time. Skullcap patches can be dug and divided every few years to increase vigour and prevent the plants from crowding themselves out.
Native Range Across entire continent of North America except the far north.
Medicinal Uses I like to tell my students that Skullcap is like a big warm cozy blanket. Or more precisely: Skullcap is like being tucked into a big warm cozy blanket under clean sheets on the most comfortable bed ever after the best day you had hiking in an alpine meadow with your best friends. You feel soothed, calm, a bit giddy with contentment, and perfectly sleepy.
Sun/Soil Skullcap likes rich moist soil and can be found in the wild growing along edges of wetlands and streams. In the garden it does fine if given fertile soil and a good soaking every other week or so.
Habit A Mint Family member, Skullcap grows in a similar manner to its Mentha spp cousins. It spreads by underground rhizomes and forms dense patches of luminous light-green square-stemmed leafy stalks to 2 ft tall.
Skullcap has a sedative, anti-anxiety, and muscle relaxant effect through its effect on the neurotransmitter GABA. This mechanism is similar to how tranquilizing drugs such as benzodiazepines, barbiturates, or alcohol, affect the nervous system (but without being narcotic and highly addictive). Skullcap also acts as a dopamine reuptake inhibitor, increasing the levels of this feel-good neurotransmitter in the brain.
Culinary Uses None known.
1 pkg (approx 60-80 seeds)
All seed varieties are grown at our farm and/or locally wildcrafted by us. The seeds are hand-gathered and hand-processed in small batches each year.
Chemical-free farm-grown Blue Skullcap (Scutellaria lateriflora) seeds for organic growing.
Life Cycle Perennial.
Responding well to irrigation and fertilization when situated in drier climates, growing skullcap is a hardy, herbaceous perennial herb when grown in such conditions and attains a height of 1 to 3 feet (31 cm. to just under a meter) tall.
Growing skullcap herb has bluish violet hooded flowers, which bloom from May through September and has a spreading habitat. From the family Lamiaceae and found among the rich fauna of North America’s woodlands, thickets, and along stream banks those wanting to know how to grow skullcap herb plants will need to provide similar growing conditions. Optimal skullcap plant care will include plantation in full sun to partial shade in moist, well-drained soil.
Growing skullcap herbs may also be propagated via division of roots or cuttings and will then spread and clump. The resulting skullcap herb plants are resistant to most major pests.
Sow skullcap plant seeds indoors where they will germinate in around two weeks time. Then transplant the growing skullcap herb seedlings outdoors after the danger of frost has passed, spacing them 12 inches (31 cm.) apart in rows.
Skullcap herb uses are varied in that skullcap refers to two separate herbs: American skullcap ( Scutellaria lateriflora ) and Chinese skullcap ( Scutellaria baicalensis ), both of which are used to treat entirely different conditions. Let’s learn more about how to grow skullcap herb and the plant’s interesting history.
Skullcap Planting Instructions.
Skullcap planting instructions include stratifying seeds for at least a week before sowing. To stratify the skullcap herb seeds, place them in a sealed plastic bag with moistened vermiculite, sand, or even a moist paper towel and refrigerate them. Use three times the amount of vermiculite vs. seeds and only slightly moisten, as excessive moisture may cause the seeds to mold.
Chinese skullcap is found in China and into parts of Russia. Chinese skullcap herb uses have been employed for centuries to treat allergies, cancer, infections, inflammation, and headaches. Most laboratory studies have been done on the Chinese skullcap variety and may even suggest some antifungal and antiviral benefits.
American skullcap is native to North America, specifically throughout the prairie states where there are eight varieties to be found. Containing scutellarin, a flavonoid compound with confirmed sedative and antispasmodic effects, some of the American skullcap herb uses include its use as a mild relaxant, commonly treating anxiety, nerves, and convulsions. Growing skullcap has been used for over 200 years– listed in the U.S. Pharmacopoeia from 1863 to 1916 and in the national formulary from 1916 to 1947. Despite these prestigious listings, skullcap has also been listed as having no medicinal properties in either publication.
The controversy over skullcap herb uses aside, this herb was once used as a remedy for rabies and hence is also known as ‘Mad-Dog’ skullcap. The native plains people also once used skullcap ( S. parvula ) as a treatment for diarrhea.
Once the skullcap herb plant is in bloom, harvest the aerial parts 3 inches (8 cm.) above the ground for use as a strong tea, tincture, or liniment. As with most herbs, the skullcap herb plant may be used fresh or dried.