Wildflower in Autumn: Shepherd(ess)’s Purse


Capsella bursa-pastoris


Yup, they are still popping out of the soil.  The Wildflowers we see now are of two categories:  It’s-my-time-of-season Flowers and I-reseeded-myself-here Flowers.  Shepherd’s Purse falls into the reseeding category (puns-intended).  Early in the Spring this little heart-breaker comes out to play, seeds very quickly, and then waits all Summer for a late return in the Autumn.

I first saw this Plant growing at the Herb-Pharm in Williams, Oregon.  And believe it or not they were in well-maintained, intentionally planted rows.  The Herb-Pharm grows and processes Shepherd’s Purse into an extract.

I happened upon Botanical.com, a website dedicated to sharing Maud Grieve’s two volumes of “A Modern Herbal”.  There was thorough information on the medicinal use and history of this Wildflower.  To sum it up, Shepherd’s Purse is a hemostatic.  It will stop bleeding at once and can be applied to many body parts (head, nose, urinary tract, digestive tract, uterus).


basal leaf symmetry of Shepherd's Purse


The most common and modern usage would be for heavy menstrual bleeding.  The fresh aerial parts (above ground) can be made into a tea.  Supposedly the heavy bleeding will lessen after the first cup.  If you do use this remedy, start slow and take notes as to how it makes you feel and how it changes the excess blood flow you are trying to cure.  Meditate with the Plant before and after it is in you for guidance.

I think the Flower Essence would be very magical, and do right for the Heart.  I can see it helping to reach your Heart forth and expose it over and over again.  Allowing yourself to remain open and flowing, but still be connected to your roots.  To be grounded while letting your Heart adjust to a proper amount of sharing.  The herb could also help in strengthening the connection between your Heart and yourself.  This is what I gather from its Doctrine of Signatures.  To have your Heart exposed without losing it.

As always, check with your family doctor before starting any sort of regimen with the herb.  Shepherd’s Purse medicine should be avoided during pregnancy and in most cases is too strong for children.

I’m not sure why it was named Shepherd’s Purse.  To me it looks like Little Hearts, and for this I refer to it as such.  They do make me smile and feel a little love for the volunteer weeds in the crop beds.  Here are a few more pics so you can see the leaves and root.


this Shephard's Purse is 2 feet tall


enjoy! xxoo


ps – i also happened upon this shirt



2 thoughts on “Wildflower in Autumn: Shepherd(ess)’s Purse

  1. Thank you for the photos and excellent description of Shepherd’s Purse. I’ve heard about its wonderful properties, and know it is fairly common, but I haven’t noticed it in my wanderings. I will keep my eyes open for it now that I have your excellent images in my memory!

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