Shepherd’s purse – Capsella bursa-pastoris

Shepherd’s purse is a lesser known weed that is flowering at the moment; it’s easily identified by the ‘purse’ or heart-shaped seed pods on the stem. The entire plant above the ground is used to make a medicine that’s commonly used to reduce unwanted bleeding. It does this by encouraging blood coagulation and also causing blood vessels to widen, therefore diverting blood away from the site of bleeding, including helping circulation to the heart and extremities. It contains the antiinflammatory and tissue strengthening flavonoid called rutin which helps where weak veins and poor uterine muscle tone allows blood to ‘stagnate’ and build up in uterine tissue. It’s therefore a good medicine for heavy menstrual bleeding where blood is dark and clotted.