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Home » Plant infomation

Valeriana officinalis  L.


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Botanical Name


Valeriana officinalis L.

English Name


Valerian. All-Heal. Amantilla. Setwall. Setewale and Capon's Tail



Valeriana sambucifolia, Mikan, Valeriana angustifolia, Tausch.





General Info


The roots tend to merge into a short, conical root-stock or erect rhizome, the development of which often proceeds for several years before a flowering stem is sent up, but slender horizontal branches which terminate in buds are given off earlier, and from these buds proceed aerial shoots or stolons, which produce fresh plants where they take root. Only one stem arises from the root, which attains a height of 3 or 4 feet. It is round, but grooved and hollow, more or less hairy, especially near the base. It terminates in two or more pairs of flowering stems, each pair being placed at right angles to those above and below it. The lower flowering stems lengthen so as to place their flowers nearly or often quite on a level with the flowers borne by the upper branches, forming a broad and flattened cluster at the summit, called a cyme. The leaves are arranged in pairs and are united at their bases. Each leaf is made up of a series of lance-shaped segments, more or less opposite to one another on each side of the leaf (pinnate). The leaflets vary very much in number, from six to ten pairs as a rule, and vary also in breadth, being broad when few in number and narrower when more numerous; they are usually 2 to 3 inches long. The margins are indented by a few coarsely-cut teeth. The upper surface is strongly veined, the under surface is paler and frequently more or less covered with short, soft hairs. The leaves on the stem are attached by short, broad sheaths, the radical leaves are larger and long-stemmed and the margins more toothed. The flowers are small, tinged with pink and flesh colour. The corolla is tubular, and from the midst of its lobes rise the stamens, only three in number, though there are five lobes to the corolla. The limb of the calyx is remarkable for being at first inrolled and afterwards expanding in the form of a feathery pappus, which aids the dissemination of the fruit. The fruit is a capsule containing one oblong compressed seed. Apart from the flowers, the whole plant has a foetid smell, much accentuated when bruised.

Herb Effects

The root is antispasmodic, carminative, diuretic, hypnotic, powerfully nervine, stimulant, sedative, antistress, hypnotic, reduces pain sensation and promotes sleep


Nutrition Science News
Australian Naturopathic Network
Plants for a Future
King's American Dispensatory


Active Ingredients

Acetic acid, ascorbic acid, azulene, beta-bisabolene, beta-elemene, beta-ionene, beta-phellandrene, beta-pinene, beta-sitosterol, borneol, bornyl-acetate, camphene, caryophyllene, chlorogenic acid, choline, delta-cadinene, formic acid, gamma-terpinene, limonene, niacin, riboflavin, terpinolene, thiamin, valeric acid, valtrate (root); beta-carotene, caffeic acid, gamma-linolenic acid, kaempferol, linoleic acid, myrcene, oleic acid, p-coumaric acid, palmitic acid, quercetin (plant).

Chemistry of Active Ingredients
Product Categories






Product Categories
Ascorbic acid Not Available 2-(1,2-dihydroxyethy
C6H8O6 Click Here To Enlarge
beta-Carotene Not Available 3,7,12,16-tetramethy
l)-octadec a-1,3,5,
C40H56 Click Here To Enlarge
Beta-sitosterol 5779-62-4 17-(5-ethyl-6-methyl
,11,12,14, 15,16,17
C29H50O Click Here To Enlarge
Borneol 10385-78-1 1,7,7-trimethylnorbo
C10H18O Click Here To Enlarge
Caffeic acid Not Available 3-(3,4-dihydroxyphen
yl)prop-2-enoic acid
C9H8O4 Click Here To Enlarge
Chlorogenic acid 327-97-9 3-[3-(3,4-dihydroxyp
cyclohexan e-1-carb
oxylic acid
C16H18O9 Click Here To Enlarge
Choline 67-48-1 2-hydroxyethyl-trime
C5H14NO+ Click Here To Enlarge
Kaempferol 80714-53-0 3-[3-[4,5-dihydroxy-
(hydroxyme thyl)oxa
-2 -yl]oxy-4,5-dihy
C33H40O21 Click Here To Enlarge
Limonene 9003-73-0 1-methyl-4-prop-1-en
C10H16 Click Here To Enlarge
Quercetin Not Available 2-(3,4-dihydroxyphen
C15H10O7 Click Here To Enlarge
Valerianine 30634-66-3 5-(methoxymethyl)-9-
C11H15NO Click Here To Enlarge
Acetic acid 77671-22-8 acetic acid C2H4O2 Click Here To Enlarge
Azulene Not Available 3,8-dimethyl-5-propa
fonic acid
C15H18O3S Click Here To Enlarge
beta-Bisabolene 495-61-4 6-methyl-2-(4-methyl
C15H24 Click Here To Enlarge
Beta-elemene 33880-83-0 1-ethenyl-1-methyl-2
C15H24 Click Here To Enlarge
Beta-ionone 14901-07-6 4-(2,6,6-trimethyl-1
C13H20O Click Here To Enlarge
beta-Phellandrene 555-10-2 3-methylidene-6-prop
C10H16 Click Here To Enlarge
Beta-pinene 23089-32-9 6,6-dimethyl-2-methy
C10H16 Click Here To Enlarge
Bornyl acetate 20347-65-3 (1,7,7-trimethylnorb
ornan-2-yl) acetate
C12H20O2 Click Here To Enlarge
Camphene 5794-04-7 2,2-dimethyl-3-methy
C10H16 Click Here To Enlarge
Caryophyllene 87-44-5 4,11,11-trimethyl-8-
C15H24 Click Here To Enlarge
delta-Cadinene Not Available 1,6-dimethyl-4-propa
C15H24 Click Here To Enlarge
Formic acid 992-98-3 formic acid CH2O2 Click Here To Enlarge
gamma-Terpinene 99-85-4 1-methyl-4-propan-2-
C10H16 Click Here To Enlarge
Niacin 99148-57-9 Pyridine-3-carboxyli
c acid
C6H5NO2 Click Here To Enlarge
Riboflavin Not Available Not Available C17H21N4O9P Click Here To Enlarge
Terpinolene 586-62-9 1-methyl-4-propan-2-
C10H16 Click Here To Enlarge
Thiamin 59-43-8 2-[3-[(4-amino-2-met
ia-3-azoni acyclope
C12H17N4OS+ Click Here To Enlarge
Valeric acid 70268-41-6 pentanoic acid C5H10O2 Click Here To Enlarge
Valtrate 18296-44-1 Not Available C22H30O8 Click Here To Enlarge
gamma-Linolenic acid 1686-12-0 (6E,9E,12E)-octadeca
C18H30O2 Click Here To Enlarge
Linoleic acid 8024-22-4 Octadeca-9,12-dienoi
c acid
C18H32O2 Click Here To Enlarge
Myrcene 2153-31-3 7-methyl-3-methylide
C10H16 Click Here To Enlarge
Oleic acid 8046-01-3 octadec-9-enoic acid C18H34O2 Click Here To Enlarge
P-coumaric acid 501-98-4 3-(4-hydroxyphenyl)p
rop-2-enoic acid
C9H8O3 Click Here To Enlarge
Palmitic acid 66321-94-6 Hexadecanoic acid C16H32O2 Click Here To Enlarge


Medicinal Use

Good for emotional problems, such as anxiety and in headaches, insomnia, palpitations etc. Valerian has a remarkable influence on the cerebro-spinal system, and is used as a sedative to the higher nerve centres in conditions ofnervous unrest, St. Vitus's dance, hypochrondriasis, neuralgic pains and the like. The drug allays pain and promotes sleep. It is used for nervous overstrain, as it possesses none of the after-effects produced by narcotics. Oil of Valerian is employed as a popular remedy for cholera, in the form of cholera drops. The juice of the fresh root, under the name of Energetene of Valerian, has of late been recommended as more certain in its effects, and of value as a narcotic in insomnia, and as an anti-convulsant in epilepsy. Having also some slight influence upon the circulation, slowing the heart and increasing its force, it has been used in the treatment of cardiac palpitations. It is also used internally in the treatment of painful menstruation, cramps, hypertension, irritable bowel syndrome etc. Externally, it is used to treat eczema, ulcers and minor injuries.


Do not use during pregnancy or lactation period.


Grieve. M. A Modern Herbal. 1931 (

Johnson T. CRC Ethnobotany Desk Reference (

Phytochemical Database. USDA - ARS - NGRL. Beltsville Agricultural Research Center. Beltsville. Maryland.



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