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Edible Flowers & Herbal Medicines: Mallow

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Mallow, sometimes called common mallow or marsh mallow, is a plant in the same family as hibiscus, hollyhocks, rose of Sharon, okra, jute, and cotton. The botanical name of the plant is Althea officinalis. “Althea” comes from a Greek word that means “to heal.”

Mallow’s best known medicinal property is demulcent, meaning is soothes inflammation and irritation. It is also emollient, meaning it softens the skin. These properties are owing to the mucilage mallow produces. If you are familiar with okra, you will know what mucilage is!

According to Mountain Rose Herbs, mallow is also a diuretic and an expectorant. For this reason, and because of its soothing properties, you will see it in herbal remedies for cough & cold, and for complaints of the urinary tract.

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