Shepherd's purse - Capsella bursa-pastoris (in the Brassicaceae or Mustard family)
Part used: Aerial herb in fruiting stage, needs to be used fresh
Taste/smell: Spicy taste, unpleasant odor.
Dosage: Infusion: 1-2 tablespoons of fresh herb per cup of water; or 1:2 fresh strength liquid extract: 20-60 drops 1-4 times per day.
Mental picture and specific indications: Shepherd's purse is indicated for atony and prolapse of pelvic organs and passive bleeding.
Use: (a) Hemostatic, (b) Diuretic, (c) Tonifying to pelvic organs.
Shepherd's purse gently stimulates the kidneys and urinary tract, relieves atonic catarrhal conditions and passive hemorrhage from the uterus and other organs. It is used for hemorrhoids, atonic enuresis, atonic menorrhagia and metrorrhagia, bleeding fibroid tumors, diarrhea and gout. Shepherd's purse has been shown to inhibit increase in capillary permeability induced by histamine.
Contraindications: It is a uterine stimulant and is contraindicated in pregnancy unless used under the guidance of a qualified health care professional.