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148 Addison
Twin Falls, ID

Cramp Bark [1 oz.]


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Cramp bark may be a more familiar herb than you think. Its botanical name is

Viburnum opulus, and it also goes by the names of Guelder rose, highbush

cranberry, and snowball tree. Two cultivars of Viburnum opulus ('Roseum' and

'Sterile') are frequently used ornamentally and known as snowball bushes or

viburnum snowball bushes. You may recognize them with their hydrangea-like

blooms and sweet smell. In its natural habitat, cramp bark is a shrub that can

grow up to 15' tall and wide. It blooms with large white flowers and produces

bright red, edible berries. Cramp bark is originally native to Europe but has

been naturalized in the woodlands of the U.S. and Canada. True to its name, the

bark of Viburnum opulus is most frequently used medicinally. The berries can be

eaten as a food source and contain high amounts of vitamin C. They can also be

used to make a natural dye. The bark is usually harvested in the spring before

the buds open or in the fall before the leaves change color. It contains many

different plant compounds that give it antispasmodic, relaxant, and sedative

properties. Cramp bark should not be confused with a similar- and related- herb

known as black haw (Viburnum prunifolium).

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