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White Horehound

Marrubium vulgare

Clear stagnation from the lungs with one of the oldest and most reliable cough remedies.

Use this herb for:


  • Bitter digestive tonic

  • Hepatic

  • Anthelmintic (promotes expelling intestinal parasites)

  • Expectorant (helps clear mucous from the lungs)

  • Antispasmodic


  • Reducing inflammation of the bronchi

  • Reducing spasm of the bronchi in whooping cough and asthma

  • Increasing appetite

  • Calming upset stomach (dyspepsia)

  • Helping clear intestinal worms

  • Common cold


  • Marrubiin (Diterpene – Antitussive bitter)

  • Alkaloids (betonicine)

  • Flavonoids – apigenin, luteolin

  • Pyrrolidine alkaloids

  • Mucilage

  • Minerals (potassium) & Vitmaims (C)


Bitter, Slightly spicy & warming , Clearing–

For the Depressed, Relaxed & Torpid tissue states.


White Horehound does not find a place inside “The Spirit of Herbs” Tarot but is noted by Tierra as a plant ally to Pleurisy Root which is connected to the 3 of Swords.


Being connected to the 3 of Swords as an ally to Pleurisy Root this plant is ruled by Saturn in Libra.  Saturn being slow, binding and heavy which are all components to stagnation is entering Libra, a house of Air which has the ability to move this stagnant state.

In the Respiratory tract the moving action of Marrubium helps clear stagnation in the lungs, moving “Thick, viscid, heavy phlegm,” according to Culpepper.  The lungs being connected to the scales of Libra are relaxed by the antispasmodic properties attributed to Saturn’s Heaviness.

Marrubium has many moving actions. It is a bitter to the digestive system. This plant is stimulating to the stomach increasing acid production, acting on the liver to produce bile and the pancreas to release digestive enzymes.


White Horehound is a perennial herb native to Europe and small parts of Asia and Africa.  A member of the Lamiaceae Plant family which houses many of the medicinal plants in the Western Herbal Dispensary. This plant grows well in full sun and well draining soil.  We harvest the leaves and flowers in June & July on Vancouver Island.


  • Very large doses are purgative and emetic.

  • Caution advised during during pregnancy and lactation. 

  • Contact dermatitis has been reported involving the juice.

  • Excessive doses can cause irregular heartbeats and hypertension.

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