Herbs > Eyebright Herb

Information on, uses of and how to grow eyebright:

Name
Euphrasia officinalis.

Family
Scrophulariaceae.

History
Has been used for many hundreds of years to treat eye problems.

Growing pattern
Biennial.

Seeds
Buy Herb Seeds (Organic and Non-Organic) from The Green Chronicle (Pay in $US, £, Euro).
Herbs, Seasonings, Seeds and Spices - Buy Eyebright from Mountain Rose Herbs ($US).

How to grow
Eyebright is a European wild flower and does not grow readily in garden conditions. It is also difficult to obtain seeds. Blooms in late summer and is essentially a wild flower. Eyebright is parasitic and relies on the companion planting of grasses to prosper.

Soil condition/position
Eyebright likes grassy patches not well-tilled soil.

Appearance
Grows to a maximum of 20cm if conditions are right but usually to about 15 cm. The leaves look a bit like tiny nettles and the flowers are white streaked with yellow and violet.

Uses
Tea can be made from the whole plant fresh or dried and taken as a tonic or remedy for hay-fever. An infusion of the leaves can be used to bathe tired, sore eyes.