Comfrey: An Herbal Profile



Delicate, lavender, bell-like flowers grace this magnificent plant called Comfrey. She grows quickly and fills whatever space she is planted in. She thrives under the shade of a tree. Her young leaves are slightly peppery tasting and quite enjoyable. 

Used medicinally for more than 2000 years, Comfrey is quite the workhorse. There seem to be more uses than can fill a page! Recently vilified by modern medicine as a possible carcinogen and cause for liver disease, most herbalists trust her long, documented history of safe use and continue their love affair with her.

*There are warnings out there about internal use if you do your research, so I encourage you to indeed do research and decide for yourself how to use Comfrey.* 

Comfrey is mucilaginous and wonderful for coughs or digestive issues. The root can be decocted into a tea and drunk for relief. The leaves can be eaten when they are young but get tough and lose flavor with age. They are full of vitamin B12, potassium, calcium, iron, Vitamin C, and a host of other nutrients. 

Often used in salves, Comfrey contains Allantoin which gives anti-inflammatory abilities and helps to renew cells. It can help relieve pain from sprains or strains as well. Comfrey poultices help reduce swelling and bruising. It is a must for broken bones and injuries! love to use it in my healing and pain relief salves.

Comfrey can help lower cholesterol and is also a wonderful herb for those suffering from irritable bowel syndrome. Adding it to a gut-healing regimen would be highly beneficial. 

Animals love to eat Comfrey and it is also a wonderful addition to the compost pile. It seems to really help get it going. It will spread on its own but if you want to plant more, cut some of the root and plant it. It’s easy to grow from root cuttings. 

Having Comfrey in my garden makes me smile because I know what a gem she is. In a time where self-suffiency is growing in importance, multi-use herbs like her are crucial to keep on-hand for food (mostly for livestock) and medicine. 

Note: Comfrey leaf and root can also be purchased dried and used in the same way as the fresh herb.

Do you use Comfrey? What are your favorite uses for her?

 You can purchase dried comfrey here.

The above statements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, prevent, or cure any disease. Use common sense and research when it comes to herb usage. Comfrey is not recommended for use by pregnant or breastfeeding women. Always consult an herbalist before using herbs.

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  1. Dana Adams says

    We LOVE comfrey! I make comfrey ointment all the time! It has soo many uses! We use it for scrapes, cuts, damaged tendons, bone injuries. It was even prescribed to my daughter in law for pubic symphysis dysfunction. A condition of pregnancy where the ligaments separate prematurely and causes much pain. Comfrey stimulates new cell growth so it, known also as bone knit, is helpful to skin, tendon, muscle as well as bone. We have also used it to help heal a hernia on two occasions. No homestead should be without this fantastic healing herb!

      • Dana Adams says

        I HAD three beautiful huge plants of it and one day out of the blue my horse ate them! I was crushed!:(

    • says

      Oh my goodness! Dana, I wish I had known about using comfrey for pubic symphysis eight years ago! I had it with my first pregnancy starting around 7 months, at which point I could barely walk bc of the pain. Then with my second pregnancy the pain began at 12 WEEKS!! I could barely walk, sit up or roll over in bed, lift my legs, etc. for the rest of my pregnancy. My doctors told me it was just something that can happen when you’re pregnant and there really isn’t anything you can do about it!!! And even now, I still occasionally have the same pain during my period. I will have to try it out then and will definitely keep this in mind for future pregnancies!! Did she just use a comfrey salve? Or was it as a poultice or compress? Thanks so much for sharing!!

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