Rent Shop Volunteer Join

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Monday - June 25, 2007

From: buena vista, VA
Region: Southeast
Topic: Medicinal Plants
Title: Herbalism and Native American EthnoBotany
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

What plants cure diarrhea?

ANSWER:

At the risk of sounding pedantic, Mr. Smarty Plants would point out that diarrhea is a symptom, not a disease in itself. Through-out recorded history, people have used various plant remedies to alleviate diarrhea and other ailments, a practice referred to as herbalism.

Native American EthnoBotany is a website that has over 500 listings for plants that have been used to treat diarrhea. Another source of information about medicinal plants is the Bakken Library and Museum, It is important that you pay attention to the caution found on the Bakken site when you use plant remedies from any source. I have paraphrased it below (the italics are mine).

Caution: The information found in many Herbals is purely historical and should not be construed in any way as medical advice. Many plants are poisonous or cause severe allergic reactions. Identification of plants may sometimes be difficult. Always consult a physician before using plant remedies.

 

More Medicinal Plants Questions

Negative and positive effects of invasive dandelions from Rama Ontario
January 12, 2012 - How do Dandelions have a negative impact of being a invasive and a Positive impact of being a invasive species ?
view the full question and answer

Plants good for repelling bugs in Austin, TX
April 18, 2007 - I need help on what type of plants or herbs are good for keeping bugs away from the house and also something that would be good for in the house for bugs?
view the full question and answer

Comptonia peregrina tea as topical treatment for poison ivy
July 19, 2007 - I have been told that Sweet Fern stewed into a tea is a great topical treatment for poision ivy. Is this true?
view the full question and answer

Texas plants useful to early settlers
June 05, 2012 - I'm working on some interpretation for a prairie heritage trail in SE TX (near Houston). I'd like to know where I can find some good information on plant remedies which might have been used by early...
view the full question and answer

Possible medicinal uses of Spanish Moss (Tillandsia usneoides)
April 13, 2006 - I recently read an article about the healing properties of Spanish Moss. It mentioned reducing bad cholesterol in the human body. What exactly are the properties in this plant that are good for you, ...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.