Latin: Plantago lanceolate/major
TCM: Che Qian Zi (the seed), Semen Plantaginis
It is not related to cooking plantain, a type of banana.
“The whole plant is considered medicinal and is solvent in water … an alterative, astringent, a diuretic and an anti-septic … cooling, soothing and healing … It is also sometimes used to treat diabetes, dysentery, earache, inflammation of the ear, emissions, enuresis, erythema, impotence, neuralgia, polyuria, pains of the spleen, tobacco habit, toothache, delayed urination and worms.” (Robert Thomson, in “The Grosset Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine” (1980))
It is an “astringent, anti-infective.” (Menzies-Trull in "The Herbalist's Prescriber")
An “expectorant, demulcent, astringent, diuretic … [it] has valuable healing properties … ideal for coughs … mild bronchitis … diarrhoea … haemorrhoids … cystitis.”
” (David Hoffman in “The New Holistic Herbal”).
It is “…sweet, cold … promotes urination and clears heat … clears the eyes … expels the phlegm …” Dan Bensky and Andrew Gamble, in “Chinese Herbal Medicine Materia Medica”
By Jason Hollinger (PlantainUploaded by Amada44) [CC BY 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons