Greater Water-parsnip
Sium latifolium


Greater Water-parsnip is a perennial plant, 70-120 cm tall, with a short root. The stem is branched in the upper part. The leaves of the plant are 15-30cm long and 7-12cm wide, at the base the leaves can be 50-100cm long and 10-25cm wide. The plant tends to have underwater and above-water leaves.

The flowers form cymes, white in color. Fruits 3-4 mm long, 2.5-3 mm wide.

The above-ground part of the plant (stems, leaves and flowers) and roots are used for medicinal purposes. The plant is harvested and dried. The drug is stored in fabric bags, in a dark and dry place.

The root of Greater Water-parsnip contains polyacetylene compounds and coumarin. The stems, leaves and flowers are rich in flavonoids. The stems and leaves contain coumarins and quercetin. Coumarins, kaempferol, quercetin were found in inflorescences. Quercetin and kaempferol in flowers. The fruit contains essential oils consisting of limonene 89, peryl aldehyde 4, alpha phelandrene (in unripe fruit), alpha pinene, beta pinene, beta bisobolene, alpha curcumen, p-cymol, camphene, myrcene, siole acetate, vegetable fat (10- 25%), in their composition: linoleic acid 47-52%, oleic acid 0.6%, petroselic acid 35%, higher aliphatic carbohydrates.

Medicinal significance

Medicinal properties of Greater Water-parsnip are provided by the polyacetylene compounds and coumarins contained in it. These substances also produce stimulant, diuretic, anti-inflammatory and anti-scurvy effects.

In folk medicine, this plant has been used historically to get rid of kidney stones, as a diuretic and as an anti-scurvy remedy. This plant is used to treat cystitis, as an anti-inflammatory agent. Also used to treat intestinal ulcers, the boiled roots are eaten for this purpose.

Not recommended for use

The plant is not fully studied and is also poisonous. It should not be used during pregnancy and lactation, and it is forbidden to give it to small children. When the plant is taken orally, it can irritate the digestive tract, depress the CNS to the point of paralysis.