Lygodesmia spinosa Nutt.
Spiny Skeletonweed is a perennial with several stems, which
are many-branched. The branches are rigid and very spiny tipped. The lower
leaves are linear and entire, less than 3 cm long. The flowers are pink to
reddish-purple, the heads consisting of 3 to 5 ray flowers. Dry,
exposed rocky areas. Spiny Skeletonweed is found scattered
throughout the west from southern British Columbia, south to the east of the
Cascade Mts to California, and eastward to through Idaho to western Montana.
The roots are diaphoretic. A decoction of the
crushed roots has been used in the treatment of colds. A decoction of the
crushed root has been used as a herbal steam bath to cause sweating in the
treatment of colds, mumps and tuberculosis. The leaves and stems are astringent
and emetic. A decoction of the plant tops has been used in the treatment of diarrhea.
The decoction has been used externally as an eyewash. A poultice of the cottony
fuzz (probably the seed floss) has been applied to sores and boils to promote
their healing. The cottony fuzz has also been placed in the cavity of an aching
tooth to relieve the pain
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