Water Avens- a perennial plant with a thick, brown and creeping root, with a steep, easily branched, dark stem, which tends to grow up to 1m in height. The root is yellowish in cross-section, with a characteristic "clove" aroma. The smell is weaker than that of an Water Avens . Rhizome leaves are placed on long stems. The arrangement of the pages is complicated, there are several pairs of adjacent pages. The leaves of the stem are placed on short stalks, or even sessile, divided into three parts, they have small ovate lobes.
Water Avens flowers are bell-shaped, bisexual, up to 1.5 cm in diameter. Flowers develop at the ends of long stalks in 2-5 pieces, at the very top of the stem. Petals yellow with dark red veining. The plant blooms for 20 days, in the period from May to June.
Water Avens fruit - red, with a hook-like tip for hooking (similar to a thistle). The fruits ripen from July to August.
For medicinal purposes, the surface part of the plant and the roots are collected.
Harvesting of roots begins in late autumn or early spring. The excavated root is well shaken off the sand, washed, then twisted in the fresh air. Dry in dryers not exceeding 50C.
The above-ground part is harvested during the flowering period. They are dried on sieves in dryers or in a cool, shaded place. The collected plant is stored in well-ventilated rooms for no longer than one year. When the roots are stored for a long time, their aroma disappears.
The root of the Water Avens contains 22% of tannins from the pyrogallol series, phenolic acids and their derivatives, flavonoids, saponins, catechin, alkaloids, a large amount of carbohydrates, red pigment, essential oil up to 0.1%, which contains eugenol. Young leaves contain ascorbic acid up to 0.12%, as well as carotene up to 0.14%. Up to 20% vegetable oil was found in the seeds of the plant.
Water Avens root has astringent, anti-inflammatory, bleeding-stopping, wound-healing properties and can be used to treat chronic colitis, uterine bleeding, nephritis and cystitis. The root of the Water Avens has an anti-inflammatory effect, which contributes to the normalization of vascular permeability, the catechins in the root reduce edema. The plant also has an antioxidant and antimicrobial effect thanks to the flavone glycosides present in the root of the plant. Decoctions and infusions of the plant can be used to treat various respiratory diseases due to the significant amount of ascorbic acid. Tannins act effectively against pathological intestinal flora (salmonella, staphylococci), so Water Avens can be recommended for the treatment of the digestive tract.
Since the plant has a unique composition and many valuable properties, it is also successfully used in folk medicine. A decoction of the roots is known as an effective, tonic agent after illness. A root decoction is used in endometriosis and hemorrhoidal bleeding. It will also help with malaria, insomnia, scurvy, migraine, venomous snake and insect bites.
A decoction of the roots, less often a decoction of the leaves of the plant, is used in cases of angina, laryngitis and stomatitis, as a mouth and throat rinse. For baths in case of exacerbation of rheumatism. Fresh, crushed Water Avens root is able to deal with blisters. Water Avens decoctions and infusions have found a stable place in the treatment of bladder and urinary tract diseases, as well as in the treatment of bronchitis and pneumonia, as an expectorant. Alcoholic extracts of Water Avens are used for insomnia and nervous tension.