Leaves up to 100 cm across. Unmistakable in flower or fruit. Young leaves like Coltsfoot but much more coarsely toothed and not white-felted beneath. Adult leaves huge, arising singly, forming patches that cover large areas of ground. These could only be confused with rhubarb which persists in formerly cultivated places in Skye, but rhubarb has several leaves arising from a single crown.

All Skye plants are likely to be of the "male" form which has up to 5 female florets and about 30 sterile ones in each flowerhead. Any of the "female" form, with about 100 female florets and up to 3 sterile ones, would be of great interest.

Is a herbaceous perennial plant in the family Asteraceae, native to Europe and northern Asia. The flowers are produced in the early spring, before the leaves appear; they are pale pink, with several inflorescences clustered on a 5-20 cm stem. The leaves are large, on stout 80-120 cm tall stems, round, with a diameter of 40-70 cm.

Butterbur, taken from a shrub found in Europe, North America, and Asia, was used during the Middle Ages to treat fever and the plague. Later it became known as a remedy for ulcers, asthma, migraine headaches, anxiety, coughs, and wounds, probably due to its ability to calm inflammation and relax smooth muscle spasms.

the herbalist Nicholas Culpeper called it "a great preserver of the heart and reviver of the spirits". Its many uses in folk medicine include applications as a diuretic and muscle relaxant, and to treat coughs, fever, wounds, stammering, headaches, asthma and stress. not all of these uses are supported by scientific research.

Common Name:
Other Names:
Bog Rhubarb, Butterbur, Devil's Hat, European Pestroot, Flapperdock, Pestilence Wort, Sweet Colts' Foot
Botanical Name:
Petasites hybridus
Native Location:
Europe, N America, Asia
Prefers a deep fertile humus-rich soil that is permanently moist, prefers a shady site.
Sow in spring, onto surface of seed tray, only just cover seed and do not allow compost to dry out. Plant out in summer. Herbaceous perennial plant. Ht to 1m, very large leaves 75cm or across so no other plants can grow amongst. Very invasive plant - it is best to only grow the male form in the garden to prevent unwanted seedlings.
1m (3ft)
Parts Used:
Flower, Leaf, stem and root
Medicinal Uses:
To treat asthma, whooping cough, migraine headaches, allergic rhinitis (hay fever), irritable bowel syndrone, and anxiety; to stimulate the appetite.
Typical Dose:
A typical dose of butterbur for allergic rhinitis is approximately 50mg of whole butterbur root extract taken twice daily.
Possible Side Effects:
Butterbur's side effects include asthma, stomach upset, fatigue, and headache
Drug Interactions:
Taking butterbur with these drugs may cause or increase liver damage:
Abacavir, (Ziagen) Acarbose, (Prandase, Precose) Allopurinol, (Aloprim, Zyloprim) Atorvastatin, (Lipitor)
Celecoxib, (Celebrex) Cidofovir, (Vistide) Cyclosporine, (Neoral, Sandimmune) Docetaxel, (Taxotere)
Dofetilide, (Tikosyn) Erythromycin, (Erythrocin, Staticin) Etodolac, (Lodine, Utradol) Fluconazole, (Apo-Fluconazole, Diflucan)
Fluphenazine, (Modecate, Prolixin) Fluvastatin, (Lescol) Foscarnet, (Foscavir) Ganciclovir, (Cytovene, Vitrasert)
Gemfibrozil, (Apo-Gemfibrozil, Lopid) Gentamicin, (Alcomicin, Gentacidin) Ibuprofen, (Advil, Motrin) Indinavir, (Crixivan)
Isoniazid, (Isotamine, Nydrazid) Ketoconazole, (Apo-Ketoconazole, Nizoral) Ketoprofen, (Orudis, Rhodis) Ketorolac, (Acular, Toradol)
Lamivudine, (Epivir, Heptovir) Levodopa-Cabidopa, (Nu-Levocarb, Sinemet) Lovastatin, (Altocor, Mevacor) Meloxicam, (MOBIC, Mobicox)
Methotrexate, (Rheumatrex, Trexall) Methyldopa, (Apo-Methyldopa, Nu-Medopa) Morphine Hydrochloride, (Morphine Hydrochloride) Morphine Sulfate, (Kadian, MS Contin)
Naproxen, (Aleve, Naprosyn) Nelfinavir, (Viracept) Nevirapine, (Viramune) Nitrofurantoin, (Furadantin, Macrobid)
Ondansetron, (Zafron) Paclitaxel, (Onxol, Taxol) Pantoprazole, (Pantoloc, Protonix) Phenytoin, (Dilantin, Phenytek)
Pioglitazone, (Actos) Piroxicam, (Feldene, Nu-Pirox) Pravastatin, (Novo-Pravastain, Pravachol) Prochlorperazine, (Compazine, Compro)
Propoxyphene, (Darvon, Darvon-N) Repaglinide, (GlucoNorm, Prandin) Rifampin, (Rifadin, Rimactane) Rifapentine, (Priftin)
Ritonavir, (Norvir) Rofecoxib, (Vioxx) Rosiglitazone, (Avandia) Saquinavir, (Fortovase, Invirase)
Simvastatin, (Apo-Simvastatin) Tamoxifen, (Nolvadex, Tamofen) Tramadol, (Ultram) Zidovudine, (Novo-AZT, Retrovir)
Taking butterbur with these drugs may enhance the drug's therapeutic and adverse effects:
Acebutolol, (Novo-Acebutolol, Sectral) Atenolol, (Apo-Atenol, Tenormin) Atropine, (Isopto Atropine, Sal-Tropine) Befulolol, (Bentos, Betaclar)
Benztropine, (Apo-Benztropine, Cogentin) Betaxolol, (Betoptic S, Kerlone) Bisoprolol, (Monocor, Zebeta) Carteolol, (Cartrol, Ocupress)
Carvedilol, (Coreg) Celiprolol, (Celiprolol) Clidinium and Chlordiazepoxide, (Apo-Chlorax, Librax) Cyclopentolate, (Cylate, Cyclogyl)
Dicyclomine, (Bentyl, Lomine) Esmolol, (Brevibloc) Glycopyrrolate, (Robinul, Robinul, Forte) Homatropine, (Isopto Homatropine)
Hyoscyamine, (Hyosine, Levsin) Hyoscyamine, Atropine, Scopolamine and Phenobarbital, (Donnatal, Donnatal Extentabs) Ipratropium, (Atrovent, Nu-Ipratropium) Labetalol, (Normodyne, Trandate)
Levobetaxolol, (Betaxon) Levobunolol, (Betagan, Novo-Levobunolol) Metipranolol, (OptiPranolol) Metoprolol, (Betaloc, Lopressor)
Nadolol, (Apo-Nadol, Corgard) Oxitropium, (Oxivent, Tersigat) Oxprenolol, (Slow-Trasicor, Trasicor) Pindolol, (Apo-Pindol, Novo-Pindol)
Prifinium, (Padring, Riabel) Procyclidine, (Kemadrin, Procyclid) Propantheline, (Propanthel) Propanolol, (Indral, InnnoPran XL)
Scopolamine, (Scopace, Transderm Scop) Sotalol, (Betapace, Sorine) Timolol, (Betimol, Timoptic) Tiotropium, (Spiriva)
Tolterodine, (Detrol, Detrol LA)
Trihexyphenidyl, (Artane)
Trimethobenzamide, (Tigan)
Taking butterbur with these drugs may increase the drug's adverse effects:
Amitriptyline, (Elavil, Levate) Cyclobenzaprine, (Flexeril, Novo-Cycloprine) Desipramine, (Alti-Desipramine, Norpramin) Diphenhydramine, (Benedryl Allergy, Nytol) Doxepin, (Sinequan, Zonalon)
Fluphenazine, (Modecate, Prolixin) Haloperidol, (Haldol, Novo-Peridol) Imipramine, (Apo-Imipramine, Tofranil) Loratadine, (Alavert, Claritin) Prochlorperazine, (Compazine, Compro)
Lab Test Alterations:
May cause increases in liver enzyme activity, changing the results of liver function tests (LFTs).
Supplement Interactions:
Increased risk of toxicity when used with herbs and supplements containing unsaturated pyrrolizidine alkaloids (UPAs), such as Comfrey and Colt's Foot.
The Essential Herb-Drug-Vitamin Interaction Guide by Geo. T. Grossberg,MD and Barry Fox,PhD Copyright©2007 Barry Fox,PhD. Pp. 105-107