Chickweed appears in fall as green mats of sprawling little plants with opposite oval leaves, five deeply divided white petals that at first glance seem to grow in pairs. The spindly, sometimes pinkish colored stems have a line of hairs growing along one side. It gets its name from the fact that it is a favorite foraging plant for chickens. Many animals, including pet birds, enjoy the flowering tops and seeds of Chickweed. However, it is said that goats will not touch it!
An infusion – the herb steeped like tea, made from Chickweed is a good source of Vitamin C, iron, and phosphorus. It has been used for digestive disorders, sore throat, rheumatism and more. The infusion also has a reputation as a remedy for constipation, hoarseness and coughs.
Chickweed flowers and leaves can be eaten raw, dried for tea, made into a tincture, or infused in oil. The tincture and infused oil can be used as a liniment for sore muscles or irritated skin. It is commonly used in herbal salves for its reputed healing properties.
Chickweed juice is an excellent external remedy for itching. It can also quickly stop bleeding and speed healing of minor wounds. Some people use Chickweed for the relief of eczema and psoriasis and claim it to be beneficial. Freeze the juice into ice cubes, then store them in zip lock bags for future use.
Chickweed tea is an old wife’s remedy for obesity. A study concluded that an extract of Chickweed is beneficial in the suppression of hormone-induced obesity in rats. It has also shown to have antihistamine and anti-inflammatory properties.
Chickweed can be eaten raw in salads or on sandwiches, cooked as a vegetable in soups, or simmered as a pot green. It can also be canned or blanched and frozen for future edible use. Enjoy Chickweed as a free substitute for Spinach as it tastes very close