Centaurea Cyanus, commonly known as Cornflower, Bachelor’s button, Bluebottle, Hurtsickle or Cyani flower, is an annual flowering plant in the family Asteraceae, native to Europe. “Cornflower” is also used for Chicory, and a few other Centaurea species.
It is an annual plant growing to 16-35 inches tall, with gray-green branched stems. The leaves are lanceolate, 1–4 cm long. The flowers are most commonly an intense blue color, 1.5–3 centimeter diameter. The blue pigment is protocyanin, which in roses is red. The other key components of cornflower are: anthocyans, bitter principles, coumarins, flavonoids, mildly antibiotic.
In Herbal medicine the Cyani flower’s medicinal parts are: flowers, leaves, seeds.
In Herbalism, the petals of cornflowers are the part used and which it is efficient in treating conjunctivitis, and as a wash for tired eyes.
The flowers are the part used in Modern Herbal Medicine and are considered to have tonic, stimulant and emmenagogue properties.
An infusion of the flowers is used externally as a skin and eye wash, a hair rinse, and in a poultice to treat wounds. A water distilled from Cornflower petals was formerly in repute as a remedy for weak eyes.
People take cornflower tea to treat fever, constipation, water retention, and chest congestion. They also take it as a tonic, bitter, and liver and gallbladder stimulant. Women take it for menstrual disorders and vaginal yeast infections.
The powder of dried leaves of the Cornflower is given, with good success, to those that have been hurt by a fall or have been broke a vein inwardly.
Centaurea cyanus in combination with Plantain, Horsetail, or Comfrey it’s a remedy against the poison of the scorpion and resist to all the venoms and poisons.
The seeds or leaves taken in wine are very good against the plague and all infectious diseases, and are very good in pestilential fevers: the juice put into fresh wounds is very effective to heal all the ulcers and sores in the mouth.
Method of preparation
Cornflowers Powder is made of dried leaves or flowers.
Place the flowers or leaves of chicory in a shaded place, and let them dry; then grind, the dried plant, in a coffee grinder. Take this powder as a medicine, one teaspoon of powder, three times a day. Keep this powder under the tongue, 10 minutes, before you swallow. Then, drink water.
Apply crushed flowers of chicory, as poultices on the affected skin.
How to Prepare the Cornflowers tea
Pour one cup of boiling water over one teaspoon of dried chicory flowers or two teaspoons of fresh flowers; leave the tea to soak for 10 minutes before drinking.
How to Prepare the Tincture of Chicory
For this purpose, mix 50 grams of fresh, crushed flowers with 250 ml alcohol 70% in a dark bottle. Then, let the mixture at a room temperature for 15 days. Shake occasionally the mixture. After 15 days, strain the liquid. You can use this tincture for wounds, or even for internal treatment – one teaspoon of tincture diluted in water, three times a day.
Cornflower is known as safe when used to color herbal teas. There isn’t enough information to know if cornflower is safe for use as a medicine.
Pregnancy and breastfeeding: There is not enough reliable data about the safety of taking cornflower if you are pregnant or breast feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.