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Bitter, Cholagogue, Depurative, Galactagogue, Hepatic, Uterine Tonic


Medicinal Uses:

Addiction, Alcoholism, Liver, Longevity Tonics


Silybum marianum is an annual or biannual plant of the Asteraceae family. This plant can take on impressive proportions: it grows from 1 to 6 1/2 feet in height with its base at times reaching nearly 5 feet in diameter. Milk thistle grows in a conical shape, the stem being grooved and somewhat cottony. In the larger specimens the stem is hollow.Milk thistle's leaves are oblong to lanceolate— and they are either lobate or pinnate, with spiny edges. The leaves also have milk-white veins, are devoid of hair, and are shiny green.The red-purple flower heads are 1 1/2 to 4 3/4 inches long and wide. They flower in the summer through autumn (more specifically from June to August in the North and from December to February in the Southern Hemisphere). Like its leaves, milk thistle's bracts are hai