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Is this comfrey? Now with Pictures!

Shawn Bell


Joined: Dec 06, 2010
Posts: 156
While driving to the in-laws today I saw what I thought was comfrey, however after looking at some pictures online they do not look like what I saw.

These plants were about 3.5 feet tall.  Looked like a single stalk, with broad thick fuzzy leaves.  At the top of the single stalk were small yellow flowers.  I dug a couple of plants up and they had big whitish looking taproot.

Is this a comfrey plant?  Any ideas what it could be?  If it is comfrey I want to dig up some more on the way home.

Thanks Shawn
Shawn Bell


Joined: Dec 06, 2010
Posts: 156
Sorry, we did not have our camera with us to take a picture of it to post.

What caught my eye was this shape (in the picture).

The old man I stopped and asked said he did not know what it was, and had never heard of comfrey.  He said he called it "that plant that looks like tobacco".


[Thumbnail for russian comfrey.JPG]

            


Joined: May 02, 2011
Posts: 28
Location: Montana
Could it have been Mullein


http://montana.plant-life.org/
Shawn Bell


Joined: Dec 06, 2010
Posts: 156
Some pictures of the plant I dug up.  I did not get a larger plant with flowers due to a growling boxer.


[Thumbnail for 081.JPG]

Shawn Bell


Joined: Dec 06, 2010
Posts: 156
It is wilted after a two days in the back of the pickup.


[Thumbnail for 082.JPG]

Shawn Bell


Joined: Dec 06, 2010
Posts: 156
Another picture.


[Thumbnail for 083.JPG]

Shawn Bell


Joined: Dec 06, 2010
Posts: 156
Matt, I checked out the web site you linked.  A very close guess, but the Mullein is skinnier and the flower stalk is much taller and more clustered than the plants I saw.  But the written description sounds just like my description.

Hopefully these picture can help someone ID the plant.  The farmer said I could have all I wanted, I just want to make sure that this is not some useless weed.

Thanks,

Shawn
                    


Joined: Oct 23, 2011
Posts: 0
Shawn Bell wrote:
Matt, I checked out the web site you linked.  A very close guess, but the Mullein is skinnier and the flower stalk is much taller and more clustered than the plants I saw.  But the written description sounds just like my description.

Hopefully these picture can help someone ID the plant.  The farmer said I could have all I wanted, I just want to make sure that this is not some useless weed.

Thanks,

Shawn


isn't mullein biennial, meaning year one is just the rosette and the stalk is in year 2?
Leila Rich
steward

Joined: May 24, 2010
Posts: 3913
Location: Wellington, New Zealand. Temperate, coastal, sandy, windy,
    
  83
Looks like mullein to me.
It's definitely not comfrey.
Jordan Lowery
volunteer

Joined: Sep 26, 2009
Posts: 1528
Location: zone 7
    
  11
its mullien, i grow that stuff on purpose for a few reasons. it medicinal and it makes a crazy good insulating mulch for protecting winter roots on plants that are not hardy enough. the small birds like it too here.


The ultimate goal of farming is not the growing of crops, but the cultivation and perfection of human beings. - Masanobu Fukuoka
                            


Joined: Feb 05, 2011
Posts: 56
Looks like Mullein. It won't have a tall flower stalk til later in the year. It's just spring.
Jahnavi Veronica


Joined: Feb 22, 2011
Posts: 42
that definitely looks like mullein to me.  it's a wonderful plant to have around.  it makes a most excellent toilet paper substitute
                    


Joined: Oct 23, 2011
Posts: 0
ditto. I suspect ya got mullein.  to ID using the bathroom test, mullein will decidedly out perform any comfrey variety, resisting tears and gently doing its work. in fact, it out performs most paper. early leaves and buds make nice smoke blend as well.
Morgan Morrigan


Joined: Oct 16, 2011
Posts: 1400
Location: Verde Valley, AZ.
out west , the leaves of mullien are wider ,and hairy.

were the flowers on central stalk? very tall? bunched like globe mallow?


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chris cromeens


Joined: Apr 26, 2012
Posts: 59
Location: north texas 7b now 8a
looks like first year mullien, smoked by indians for lung problems.


circles, cycles, phases, and stages
wayne stephen
steward

Joined: Mar 11, 2012
Posts: 1739
Location: Western Kentucky-Climate Unpredictable Zone 6b
    
  93
It is mullein. I let it come up in my garden. This year I transplanted 9 plants to areas that were kind of barren. It is a bienniel - the second year it will produce a 3-5 foot flower stalk. Good for respiratory ailments and arthritis. I have used it in tea for asthma. Have made a strong tea from whole plant in 5 gallon bucket and let older horse with swollen joints drink from it , he got better quick - gulped it down the first day , second just a little and was better on 3rd. Great soil builder , accumulator, attracts birds to the seeds, good mulch but is slow growing. Go to Pauls videos and view the one on mullein. By the way - it is in same family as comfrey and borage.


Permaculture is CPR for the planet !


Karin Schott


Joined: Apr 19, 2012
Posts: 10
Location: Western foothills of Maine
I steep mullien root and garlic cloves in olive oil. It makes a great remedy for ear infections. I give it to my little guy at the first sign of any ear pain. So much better than antibiotics.
 
 
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