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European mandrake is an herb that is the topic of lots of superstitions. Some people believe that it has wonderful powers. The root and leaves are used to make medicine.

People take european mandrake root for dealing with stomach ulcers, colic, constipation, asthma, hay fever, convulsions, arthritis-like discomfort (rheumatism), and whooping cough. It is likewise used to set off throwing up, cause drowsiness (sedation), reduce pain, and increase interest in sex.

European mandrake fresh leaves and leaf extracts are applied straight to the skin for dealing with skin ulcers. [2]

About mandrake history

The history of mandrake plants and their use and legends returns to ancient times. Ancient romans, greeks, and middle eastern cultures were all familiar with mandrake and all thought the plant had magical powers, not always for good. Mandrake is native to the mediterranean region. It is a perennial herb with a big root and dangerous fruits. Among the earliest referrals to mandrake is from the bible and most likely dates to 4,000 b.c. In the story, rachel utilized the berries of the plant to develop a kid. In ancient greece, mandrake was noted for being a narcotic. It was utilized medicinally for stress and anxiety and anxiety, sleeping disorders, and gout. It was likewise utilized as a love potion. It remained in greece that the similarity of the roots to a human was first taped. The romans continued most of the medical usages that the greeks had for mandrake. They also spread the lore and use of the plant throughout europe, consisting of britain. There it was uncommon and costly and was typically imported as dried roots. [3]


The genus madragora come from the nightshade or potato household solanaceae, a taxon of blooming plants in the solanales order. Members of this family are defined by five-petaled flowers, and alternate or alternate to opposite leaves. This family also is are known for having a diverse variety of alkaloids, which for human beings can be poisonous, beneficial, or both. For the plants, they lower the propensity of animals to consume the plants.

Mandrakes, making up genus madragora, are herbaceous, seasonal plants belonging to locations of the mediterranean and the himalayas.

The most popular mandrake is mandragora officinarum. This plant has a parsley-shaped root that is frequently branched. This root produces at the surface area of the ground a rosette of ovate-oblong to ovate, wrinkled, crisp, sinuate-dentate to entire leaves, 6 to 16 inches long, rather resembling those of the tobacco plant. Springing from the neck are a variety of one-flowered nodding peduncles, bearing whitish-green flowers, almost two inches broad, which produce globular, succulent, orange to red berries, resembling small tomatoes, which ripen in late spring. The plant grows grow natively in southern and central europe and in lands around the mediterranean sea, in addition to on corsica. This plant is called by the arabs luffâh, or beid el-jinn (” devil’s eggs”).

Tropine alkaloids

Among the most essential groups of alkaloid compounds discovered in members of the mandragora genus are tropane alkaloids, which likewise are discovered in the solanaceae genera atropa (the belladonna genus), datura, and brugmansia, along with lots of others in the solanaceae household. Chemically, the particles of these compounds have a particular bicyclic structure and consist of atropine, scopolamine, and hyoscyamine. Pharmacologically, they are the most effective recognized anticholinergics out there, indicating they hinder the neurological signals transferred by the endogenous neurotransmitter, acetylcholine. Symptoms of overdose might consist of mouth dryness, dilated students, ataxia, urinary retention, hallucinations, convulsions, coma, and death.

All parts of the mandrake plant are harmful. The fruit similarly causes poisoning in cattle. The arab name mandragora indicates “hurtful to livestock”. [4]


The root is hallucinogenic and narcotic. In adequate amounts, it causes a state of unconsciousness and was utilized as an anaesthetic for surgery in ancient times. In the past, juice from the carefully grated root was applied externally to alleviate rheumatic discomforts. It was utilized internally to deal with melancholy, convulsions, and mania. When taken internally in large dosages it was stated to excite delirium and madness.

In the past, mandrake was often made into amulets which were believed to bring good fortune, cure sterility, and so on. In one superstitious notion, people who bring up this root will be condemned to hell, and the mandrake root would shriek and sob as it was pulled from the ground, eliminating anyone who heard it. For that reason, in the past, people have tied the roots to the bodies of animals and then utilized these animals to pull the roots from the soil. This folklore recommendation is incorporated into part of the representation of the fictional mandrake seen in harry potter and the chamber of tricks.

The ancient greeks burned mandrake as incense.

In the bible

2 referrals to דודאים (duda’im, plural; particular דודא duda)– literally implying “love plants”– take place in the jewish bibles. The septuagint translates דודאים as μανδραγόρας (mandragóras), and the vulgate follows the septuagint. A number of later translations into various languages follow septuagint (and vulgate) and use mandrake as the plant as the appropriate significance in both the book of genesis 30:14– 16 and song of tunes 7:12 -13. Others follow the example of the luther bible and provide a more literal translation.

In genesis 30:14, reuben, the eldest boy of jacob and leah, discovers mandrakes in a field. Rachel, jacob’s sterile second other half and leah’s sis, is desirous of the דודאים and trades with leah for them. The trade used by rachel is for leah to spend that night in jacob’s bed in exchange for leah’s דודאים. Leah gives away the plants to her barren sis, however right after this (genesis 30:14– 22), leah, who had formerly had 4 boys but had actually been infertile for a long while, conceived once again and in time gave birth to two more kids, issachar and zebulun, and a daughter, dinah. Just years after this episode of her asking for the mandrakes did rachel handle to become pregnant.

And reuben went in the days of wheat harvest, and found mandrakes in the field, and brought them unto his mom leah. Then rachel stated to leah, give me, i pray thee, of thy kid’s mandrakes.

And she stated unto her, is it a little matter that thou hast taken my hubby? And wouldest thou take away my boy’s mandrakes likewise? And rachel stated, therefore he shall lie with thee to night for thy son’s mandrakes.

And jacob came out of the field in the evening, and leah went out to fulfill him, and stated, thou must be available in unto me; for undoubtedly i have actually hired thee with my child’s mandrakes. And he lay with her that night.

Sir thomas browne, in pseudodoxia epidemica, ch. Vii, recommended the duda’im of genesis 30:14 is the opium poppy, since the word duda’im may be a recommendation to a lady’s breasts.

Let us get up early to the vineyards; let us see if the vine thrive, whether the tender grape appear, and the pomegranates bud forth: there will i provide thee my likes.

The mandrakes offer an odor, and at our gates are all manner of pleasant fruits, new and old, which i have laid up for thee, o my cherished.

Magic and witchcraft

According to the legend, when the root is dug up, it screams and eliminates all who hear it. Literature consists of complex directions for collecting a mandrake root in relative safety. For instance, josephus (circa 37– 100 ad) of jerusalem gives the following directions for pulling it up:.

A furrow needs to be dug around the root until its lower part is exposed, then a pet dog is connected to it, after which the person connecting the pet dog needs to get away. The pet dog then endeavours to follow him, and so easily brings up the root, however dies suddenly instead of his master. After this, the root can be managed without fear.

Excerpt from chapter xvi, “witchcraft and spells”, of transcendental magic: its teaching and routine by nineteenth-century occultist and ceremonial magician eliphas levi:.

The natural mandragore is a filamentous root which, basically, provides as a whole either the figure of a man, or that of the virile members. It is a little narcotic, and an aphrodisiacal virtue was ascribed to it by the ancients, who represented it as being sought by thessalian sorcerers for the structure of philtres. Is this root the umbilical vestige of our terrestrial origin? We dare not seriously verify it, but all the same it is particular that man came out of the slime of the earth, and his first appearance must have remained in the type of a draft. The examples of nature make this idea necessarily admissible, a minimum of as a possibility. The first guys were, in this case, a family of massive, delicate mandragores, animated by the sun, who rooted themselves up from the earth; this assumption not just does not exclude, but, on the contrary, favorably expects, innovative will and the providential co-operation of a first cause, which we have reason to call god. Some alchemists, impressed by this concept, speculated on the culture of the mandragore, and explored in the synthetic reproduction of a soil adequately fruitful and a sun sufficiently active to humanise the stated root, and therefore create men without the concurrence of the female. Others, who concerned humanity as the synthesis of animals, despaired about vitalising the mandragore, however they crossed monstrous pairs and forecasted human seed into animal earth, only for the production of shameful crimes and barren deformities.

The following is taken from jean-baptiste pitois’ the history and practice of magic:.

Would you like to make a mandragora, as effective as the homunculus (little male in a bottle) so applauded by paracelsus? Then discover a root of the plant called bryony. Take it out of the ground on a monday (the day of the moon), a little time after the vernal equinox. Cut off completions of the root and bury it at night in some country churchyard in a dead man’s grave. For 30 days, water it with cow’s milk in which 3 bats have actually been drowned. When the 31st day gets here, take out the root in the middle of the night and dry it in an oven warmed with branches of verbena; then wrap it up in a piece of a dead man’s winding-sheet and bring it with you everywhere.

In medieval times, mandrake was thought about an essential component in a plethora of witches’ flying ointment dishes along with a primary part of wonderful potions and brews. These were entheogenic preparations utilized in european witchcraft for their mind-altering and hallucinogenic impacts. Beginning in the late midlifes and thereafter, some believed that witches used these ointments or ingested these potions to help them fly to gatherings with other witches, meet the devil, or to experience bacchanalian carousal. [5]

How to grow mandrake

There are multiple ways to grow mandrake. The very first technique is to start the plant inside from seed. Understand, mandrake is known for having spotty germination.

For that reason, it’s wise to start a few more seeds than you want in plants. You might purchase the seeds or gather them from overly ripe fruit in late summer season or fall.

Either way, make sure you plant mandrake seeds within 6 months as they don’t keep well. Prior to planting the seeds, they need to go through a stratification procedure.

You complete this procedure by saving the seeds in a freezer bag that’s filled with wet sand. Seal the bag and keep it in the fridge for one month.

Once the stratification procedure is complete, the seeds should sprout within two weeks. You might permit the seeds to germinate in the bag or in soil.

Mandrake has a long root which does not take pleasure in being interrupted. For this reason, it’s recommended to start the seeds in an eco-friendly pot after they have actually gone through stratification.

Fill each pot with loose, nutrient-dense soil that’s well-draining. Guarantee the seeds are grown in a warm place. When the seeds have actually grown, move them underneath a grow light.

A grow light is suggested as it will provide both light and heat. If you supply light from a window, this might leave space for drafts to happen which would be counterintuitive to the growing procedure.

When the plants are large enough, you might move them to an outdoor growing area or plant them in a container.

If you move the plants outdoors to grow in the ground, pick an area with all the required growing conditions.

Dig a hole deep enough to support the eco-friendly pot. Location the pot in the ground, backfill the hole with soil, and press securely around the base of the plant.

The next technique for growing mandrake is to position fresh seeds into an ideal growing place in the fall. This technique only works if you live in a mild environment.

By straight sowing them into the growing place, the seeds will naturally go through the stratification procedure.

Make certain to till the area going as deep as a foot or foot and a half. The seeds ought to be planted a 1/2 inch deep below the soil. Ensure you leave one foot of space between each plant.

Our next technique to growing mandrake is in a container. It’s finest to start the seeds indoors and move them to a container once they’re mature sufficient or order a mature mandrake plant online.

Dig a hole deep enough to support the root ball of the purchased plant or the eco-friendly container the seedling was begun in. When growing in a container, choose one that’s two times the width and depth of the plant.

The planter can be placed outdoors and brought inside to overwinter, or you may grow mandrake indoors year-round as long as it’s in an area which gets complete sunshine.

Be conscious that mandrake plants which are grown in containers, may fall dormant during the most popular parts of the year.

The final approach to growing mandrake is through proliferation of the plant’s root. This approach should not be attempted on plants younger than 3 years old.

Assuming that your plant is grown in an approach where it won’t go inactive till winter season, this is the perfect time to harvest a few of the root.

Dig around the edge of the plant and get rid of a slice of the root. Securely press on the soil around the plant once you’re done eliminating as lots of pieces of the root as you desire. This will ensure the original plant continues to grow.

Take the pieces of the root and plant them in a ready bed or container. If you grow them in a container, fill it with damp sand.

If growing mandrake in a garden bed from a piece of root, ensure the bed stays weed totally free. Keep the growing location (the bed or container) evenly moist throughout the growing process. The new mandrake plants will not be ready to gather for another three to 4 years.

Mandrake is a plant which takes perseverance to grow. However, you have numerous methods to choose from. Choose the choice that works finest for your convenience and ability level if you desire to include mandrake to your landscape.

Caring for mandrake

Mandrake is a low-maintenance plant that prefers to be left alone for the most part. The only things it will need from you is fertilizer and water.

You must only fertilize mandrake one time annually. Use a well balanced fertilizer and use it in early spring to give the plant the boost of nutrients it requires to flower.

When watering mandrake, it’s finest to utilize the deep watering method. This is very important because too much water can cause disease.

For that reason, by using bigger quantities of water, less days of the week, you reduce the threat of this taking place.

Don’t apply anymore water to the plant without checking the soil first. When the soil is dry to your second knuckle, it’s time to water the plant deeply once again.

This is all that’s required of you to care for a mandrake plant appropriately. Enjoy this low-maintenance plant as they’re rare.

Garden insects and diseases which could impact mandrake

Mandrake is a harmful plant. For this reason, you must beware where you plant it to avoid inadvertently harming animals or children.

However, their toxic characteristic serves them well when hindering bugs in the garden. The only pests which are known for troubling this plant are snails and slugs.

They enjoy munching on the young blooms of the plant. You can discourage these pests by spraying mandrake with an insecticide.

You might likewise spray diatomaceous earth or coffee premises around the base of the plant. The caffeine in the coffee hinders the insects while diatomaceous earth creates a hard terrain for crawling.

Mandrake likewise deals with problems with fungal illness such as root rot. This normally takes place since the plants aren’t grown in ideal conditions.

It’s essential that mandrake is grown where the soil drains pipes properly and receives sufficient sunlight. Fungal illness flourishes in areas with cold, wet soil. Prevent these conditions and your mandrake must be fine.

As you can tell, mandrake does not deal with numerous threats. Yet, it’s crucial that you stay alert to these potential risks to guarantee your plant stays healthy.

How to collect mandrake

I want to be clear, again, in this part of the article. Mandrake is a hazardous plant. You should never ever collect this plant with the intent to consume it.

However, i did want to cover how you can collect the root and leaves need to you desire them for other purposes.

Plus, it is very important to attend to a few of the rumors around gathering mandrake. To start, mandrake root is harvested by digging around the base of the plant.

Once the soil is loose, you need to have the ability to carefully remove the root from the ground. Brush the dirt from the root and store it in a cool, dry, safe area up until you’re ready to use it.

You may also harvest the leaves of mandrake by gently plucking them from the plant. They, too, should be saved in a cool, dry, and safe place.

It’s smart to wash your hands and wear gloves anytime you’re gardening. This is particularly important when dealing with a poisonous plant.

Now, to resolve the reports around gathering mandrake. Mandrake has a dark history. The root is said to look like a human. People once collected it since it has hallucinogenic results.

Many years back, before the development of modern-day medicine, physicians would recommend small amounts of mandrake to prepare somebody for surgical treatment.

Nevertheless, if you took too much of the root, it might result in death.

When people would collect the root, it was stated that the root would yell. Whoever heard the scream, would quickly die.

People would even go to the length of having an animal dig the root up for them, so it would pass away and not an individual.

In truth, the root does not yell and there are no modern-day reports of anybody passing away due to collecting the plant.

You now understand how to grow, plant, take care of, and even harvest mandrake. This plant produces a quite bloom and lively, though inedible, fruit.

Mandrake ought to be treated with respect due to the fact that it’s a poisonous plant. However, if you want to grow a plant with an abundant history, mandrake could be for you. [6]

Conventional usages and advantages of mandrake

  • It is also used to deal with travel sickness.
  • Fresh or dried root contains highly poisonous alkaloids and is cathartic, highly emetic, hallucinogenic and narcotic.
  • In adequate amounts it causes a state of oblivion and was used as an anaesthetic for operations in early surgical treatment.
  • It was much utilized in the past for its anodyne and soporific properties.
  • In the past, juice from the finely grated root was applied externally to ease rheumatic discomforts, ulcers and scrofulous tumors.
  • It was likewise used internally to treat melancholy, convulsions and mania.
  • When taken internally in big dosages, nevertheless, it is stated to delight delirium and madness.
  • Leaves are harmless and cooling, it has actually been utilized for lotions and other external applications to ulcers and so on.
  • In the past, mandrake was typically made into amulets which were thought to bring good fortune and cure sterility.
  • Herbal mandrake was believed to have great powers and was used to treat almost any disorder, from constipation and colic to convulsions.
  • It is a fantastic home remedy to deal with stomach ulcers.
  • Individuals with the issue of whooping cough, hay fever, or asthma can ease the signs with this plant.
  • It is a fantastic solution for irregularity.
  • This root is also beneficial to minimize pain, consisting of arthritis-related discomfort.
  • It is also effective for increasing interest in sex.
  • Its many uses include the treatment of jaundice, bilious in addition to fever.
  • Mandragora is also used to deal with cancer, for that reason making it an excellent natural cancer treatment.
  • It is one of the very best herbal treatments for liver illness, bowels conditions in addition to inflammation, varicose veins, promote libido and ulcers.
  • The herb was likewise used internally to treat depression, convulsions along with obsession.
  • Dehydrated bark of the plant’s root was also offered to patients as a powerful emetic.
  • They primarily utilized the herb to get rest and sleep when struggling with relentless pain.
  • The ancients also utilized the herb in small dosages to deal with maniacal problems.

Other truths

  • In one superstition, individuals who bring up this root will be condemned to hell, and the mandrake root would shout as it was pulled from the ground, killing anybody who heard it.
  • In the past, people have tied the roots to the bodies of animals and after that used these animals to pull the roots from the soil.
  • An extract of the roots is used as an ingredient in commercial cosmetic preparations as a skin conditioner and tonic.
  • Sale of mandrake is forbidden in some countries, and modern-day usages for mandrake are restricted.
  • Centuries earlier, however, ladies thought this bizarre-looking plant could induct conception, and baby-shaped roots were placed under the pillow.
  • Uses for mandrake consisted of predicting the future and offering protection for soldiers entering into battle.
  • Organic mandrake was likewise used as a love potion and aphrodisiac.
  • It was extensively implemented in religious practices and to repel fiends or toxin one’s opponents. [7]

How do you utilize mandrake root for fertility?

Utilizes: use as a poppet or to pack poppets, carry in a mojo bag, place on mantle for security, location under pillow to promote fertility, utilize to dress spell candles, or as a casting herb. [8]

Is a mandrake harmful?

European mandrake is potentially hazardous and ought to be avoided. It can cause lots of negative effects, consisting of confusion, drowsiness, dry mouth, heart issues, vision issues, getting too hot, problems with urination, and hallucinations. Big doses can be deadly.

Can mandrake root kill you?

Mandrake toxicity is high enough that it might get an amateur and even skilled user killed or in the hospital for a prolonged stay. It is best to admire the plant but make no strategies to ingest it.

How much mandrake is deadly?

As low as 3– 6 mg is lethal for a grownup. It causes fast onset of symptoms of death due to cardiovascular collapse and breathing paralysis.

Can i touch mandrake?

” in europe we have things like mandrake and henbane and lethal nightshade, so solanaceae in europe are baddies, they are not to be touched and not to be eaten and not to be horned in.

Does mandrake really shriek?

According to the legend, when the root is collected, it screams and kills all who hear it. Literature includes complex directions for collecting a mandrake root in relative security. … after this, the root can be handled without fear. [9]


Drying medications (anticholinergic drugs) interaction ranking:

Moderate beware with this combination. Talk with your health service provider.

European mandrake contains chemicals that trigger a drying effect. It also impacts the brain and heart. Drying medications called anticholinergic drugs can also trigger these results. Taking european mandrake and drying medications together may cause adverse effects including dry skin, lightheadedness, low high blood pressure, quick heartbeat, and other major negative effects.

Some of these drying medications include atropine, scopolamine, and some medications used for allergic reactions (antihistamines), and for depression (antidepressants).

Medications taken by mouth (oral drugs) interaction ranking:

Moderate be cautious with this combination. Talk with your health service provider.

European mandrake seems to slow down the bowels. Taking european mandrake together with medications taken by mouth may increase just how much medication your body absorbs. Increasing just how much medication your body takes in can increase the effects and side effects of your medicines. [10]

Special precautions and cautions

European mandrake is possibly unsafe and need to be prevented. It can cause numerous adverse effects, including confusion, drowsiness, dry mouth, heart issues, vision issues, getting too hot, issues with urination, and hallucinations. Big doses can be fatal. It is risky for anyone to utilize european mandrake, however individuals with the list below conditions are particularly likely to experience harmful adverse effects.

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: don’t take european mandrake by mouth if you are pregnant or breast-feeding. It can cause major and even deadly side effects.

Children: do not provide european mandrake to children since they are specifically sensitive to the harmful chemicals it contains.

Down syndrome: don’t provide european mandrake to individuals with down syndrome because they are especially sensitive to the damaging chemicals it consists of. [11]


The best-known species, mandragora officinarum, has long been understood for its harmful residential or commercial properties. In ancient times it was utilized as a narcotic and an aphrodisiac, and it was also thought to have particular magical powers. Its root was thought to be in the power of dark earth spirits. It was believed that the mandrake could be safely uprooted just in the moonlight, after proper prayer and routine, by a black dog connected to the plant by a cable. Human hands were not to come in contact with the plant. In medieval times it was thought that as the mandrake was pulled from the ground, it said a squeal that eliminated or drove mad those who did not block their ears against it. After the plant had actually been freed from the earth, it could be utilized for beneficent functions, such as healing, causing love, assisting in pregnancy, and offering relaxing sleep. Mandrake is still used sometimes in natural and herbal remedies and has applications in modern-day witchcraft and occult practices. [12]


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