How To Identify Comfrey

Identifying Features:

  • Leaves – Large, hairy, broad leaves. Feels rough to the touch because of the stiff hairs.
  • Flowers – Small bell-shaped flowers of various colours, typically cream or purplish, which may be striped. Common Comfrey flowers are usually white/cream.
  • Root – Has a black, turnip-like root.
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    How can you tell the difference between borage and comfrey?

    It's easy to tell comfrey and borage apart when they bloom. Borage flowers are always blue while comfrey flowers bloom in white, pink and purple. The flowers have different shapes, as well, with comfrey flowers shaped like bells and borage flowers like stars. via

    What is a comfrey plant look like?

    Comfrey is a perennial herb with a black, turnip-like root and large, hairy broad leaves that bears small bell-shaped flowers of various colours, typically cream or purplish. Comfrey is a fast growing plant, producing huge amounts of leaf during the growing season, and for that reason is very nitrogen hungry. via

    Where do you find comfrey?

    Common comfrey is a hairy plant of damp ground and is found beside rivers, in fens and ditches, and on roadside verges and waste ground. It often grows in clumps and displays clusters of bell-shaped, pinky-purple flowers from May to July. via

    Is comfrey really toxic?

    Comfrey has toxic substances that can cause severe liver damage and even death. You should never take comfrey by mouth. The toxic substances in comfrey can be absorbed by the skin. Even creams and ointments should be used for only a short time, and only under a doctor's supervision. via

    Is borage as good as comfrey?

    While comfrey (a perennial) tends to be a good companion for perennial crops, borage (an annual) makes a good companion to both annual and perennial crops. via

    How can you tell the difference between foxglove and comfrey?

    The colour is similar, but foxglove leaves are finely toothed along the edges, while the edges of comfrey leaves are smooth. Foxglove leaves spring from the root as a clump, while comfrey leaves branch from the stem. Comfrey and foxglove look similar until they blossom. via

    Can humans eat comfrey?

    When taken by mouth: Comfrey is LIKELY UNSAFE for anyone when taken by mouth. It contains chemicals (pyrrolizidine alkaloids, PAs) that can cause liver damage, lung damage, and cancer. The FDA has recommended that all oral comfrey products be removed from the market. via

    Why is comfrey called Knitbone?

    Comfrey's original name, knitbone, derives from the external use of poultices of its leaves and roots to heal burns, sprains, swelling, and bruises. In Western Europe, comfrey has been used topically for treating inflammatory disorders such as arthritis, gout, and thrombophlebitis, and internally for treating diarrhea. via

    Which comfrey is best?

    Garden comfrey has a higher nutrient content than the common wild comfrey, and its leaves can be cut several times in a season. Our research found that the 'Bocking 14' variety is the best. Available from The Organic Gardening Catalogue, Garden Organic members get a 10% discount. via

    Is comfrey poisonous to dogs?

    The Merck Veterinary Manual lists comfrey as an especially risky herb because of its pyrrolizidine alkaloids, which have been linked to liver damage. The alkaloids are actually produced by the herb to fend off bugs, but the insecticide can be harmful to a dog. via

    Is comfrey an invasive plant?

    Between the self-seeding and root regrowth, comfrey can become invasive. Comfrey is a very fast growing plant. During the growing season it produces huge amounts of leaves. Mature comfrey plants can be harvested several times a year, as it will replenish itself very rapidly. via

    How do you get comfrey?

    Comfrey plants like an even amount of soil moisture. They have some drought tolerance once they're established but prefer at least a moderate level of moisture. Be sure to keep the soil of young plants consistently moist but not soggy. Water mature plants whenever the top inch or two of soil begins to dry out. via

    Why was comfrey banned?

    The pyrrolizidine alkaloids in comfrey can cause severe liver damage, liver cancer, mutagenicity, and even death. [8,9] For this reason, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has banned the sale of oral comfrey products in the United States. via

    Is it safe to drink comfrey tea?

    You can also drink dried comfrey root and leaves as tea. Today, eating or taking any form of comfrey by mouth isn't recommended. It's considered unsafe, due to the pyrrolizidine alkaloids that comfrey contains. via

    Is comfrey FDA approved?

    Medicinal use of this product has not been approved by the FDA. Comfrey should not be used in place of medication prescribed for you by your doctor. Comfrey is often sold as an herbal supplement. via

    Is borage poisonous?

    The borage plant, also known as the starflower, is an herb that is incredibly toxic to cats. The plant may also cause mild skin irritation in humans. The borage plant belongs to the Boraginaceae family and is often used as a medicinal remedy for humans. via

    Is Comfrey good for pumpkins?

    Of course in reality I realise that a three stage liquid fertiliser strategy is extreme (giant pumpkins are extreme…), most people just use nettles and/or Comfrey, they have good all round N.P.K. ingredients and that keeps life simple. via

    What does borage look like?

    Borage is a somewhat gangly plant, but because the star-shaped flowers are so vibrant, this isn't really noticed. They're brilliant blue, hanging in downward facing clusters. As the plant matures the stalks and leaves become covered with prickly fuzz. via

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