Cowslip (Primula Officinalis) Natural Remedy

Cowslip (Primula Officinalis) Natural Remedy

Cowslip has been used in traditional medicine as a calming tea for problems related to anxiety and insomnia for many years. The flowers are milder sedative, they are used to relieve pain in children and help them get a peaceful sleep. In addition, it has been used to reduce blood clotting.

Plant parts used: flowers, roots and leaves.

Botanical name: Primula officinalis, Primula veris.

Other common names: Primrose, fairy cups, palsywort, the key of heaven, key flower, cowslip primrose, artetyke, buckels, butter rose, herb de saint Paul, English cowslip.


Primula Officinal grows throughout Asia, Europe and North America. It is tolerant to frost, but it is absolutely rare in northern latitudes.

Cowslip generally grows in shady areas and places with a complete direct sunlight, as long as the soil is perfectly moist.

It is a low-growing perennial with a 5-16 cm rosette of leaves. It flowers mainly bloom in clusters atop a single stalk that can reach as tall as 21 cm.

Frequently, cowslip can be found more on open ground, its seeds are part of offerings in commercial bird seed.

Blooms are smelling good and yellow in color, known with orange dots. It is one of the  flowers which first blooms in spring.

The Health Benefits of Cowslip

Historically speaking, the Cowslip leaves which are a mildly narcotic has been used for centuries as a sedative tea in herbal medicine to treat insomnia.

The flowers and leaves contain antioxidants that help the body by strengthening the immune system.

The well-known English botanist Nicholas Culpepper said, people who used the distilled water from Cowslip would become more beautiful.

Modern herbalists have made a skin cleaning lotion from Cowslip. It is effective in treating pimples, acne and other various skin blemishes.

Its special cleaning properties can incredibly remove dirt, and open the pores of the skin, allowing a fresher and better look of the skin.

The roots of Cowslip can be used to treat cold and flu.

In Europe the Cowslip is widely used for whooping-cough; its effectiveness as an expectorant has been recognized in the modern history – soothes the respiratory tract and clears the mucus.

A recent research is aimed now to the potential benefit of this plant in treating allergies and asthma.

The antispasmodic properties of Cowslip can possibly be useful in treating tremors, epilepsy, and it may also be promoted as a natural treatment for Parkinson’s disease.

A maceration of the Primula Veris flowers can be applied to bruises which may help to a quick healing of the skin.

Cowslip has been used as an herbal medicine in treating kidney problems and urinary tract infections as well.

Herbal Preparation

Cowslip Tea:

  • 2 teaspoons Cowslip petals
  • 1 cup boiling water

Method of Preparation:

Pour the boiling water over the petals and leave to steep for 10 to 16 minutes.

Strain and drink a cup of tea, 3 times a day.

Cowslip Infusion

The infusion is prepared as follows: pour a cup of boiling water over a full teaspoon of plant, allow to infuse for 1-2 minutes, then drink sips; drink 1 liter of tea per day. It is effective in lung diseases, cold, flu.

It is useful for coughs, bronchitis, asthma, colds, rheumatism. It is also useful for children with hyperactivity and nervousness.

Decoction of Cowslip:

  • 1 teaspoon of chopped roots (4 grams)
  • 1 cup of cold water

Method of Preparation:

Place the mixture, the Cowslip roots and the water in a little pot, and bring it to the boil. Simmer for 6 minutes at a low heat.

Then leave to steep for 10 minutes; then, strain and drink.

The decoction can help to eliminate bladder stones.

External wrapping using this decoction is useful to treat bruises, sprains, skin blemishes, irritated skin after exposure to the sun, arthritis and gout.

Cowslip Wine is obtained as follows:

Fill a two-liter bottle of fresh flowers of Primrose, without pressing, then pour over home made wine (organic – no preservatives) so the flowers to be covered. Seal the bottle with a cork and let it soak for 14 days in a sunny place.

It is effective in heart disease. Take 3 tablespoons of wine a day.

Side Effects and Precautions

Allergy: Cowslip contains salicylate the same component as aspirin; that’s why, it is not recommended for people who are allergic to aspirin.

Pregnancy and breast feeding: Pregnant women should avoid consuming cowslip without medical advice. It may cause abortion.

People who take anticoagulant  drugs should not use this natural medicine, because Cowslip has the same medicinal effect as drugs have.




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