Humble dandelion reveals hidden secret
Appeared on Space For Nature on 6th September 2004
Scientists at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew are investigating the potential healing benefits of native British plants.
Before the advent of the NHS in 1945, natural herbal remedies to common ailments were understood and used by many ordinary people in this country; but the widespread arrival of 'western medicine' signalled their demise. Now scientists at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew are conducting a systematic search for medicinally active compounds in British native plants and they are focusing on species remembered by people for their use in herbal remedies.
Even the common dandelion (Taraxacum officinale) shows potential in combating cancer: so the bane of many (less enlightened) gardeners may yet prove to be the salvation of some.
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