From The Plant Encyclopedia

Seal-heal, Self Heal, Heal-all, Heal All

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Prunella vulgaris (Common Self-heal)

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Category Perennial, Groundcover, Vegetable
Kingdom Plantae
Division Magnoliophyta
Class Angiospermae
Order Lamiales
Family Lamiaceae
Species in this genus
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Aden Earth Zone

5 - 20


  • Cultivation: Naturalizing, Low-Maintenance, Easy-To-Grow
  • Light: Sun
  • Soil: Rich, Mid-Fertility, Poor
  • pH: 7
  • Moisture: Wet, Medium, Dry, Well-Drained


  • Form: Groundcover, Herbaceous
  • Habit: Perennial
  • Flower: Small, Purple
  • Fruit/Seed: Small
  • Foliage: Leaves, Green
  • Uses: Edible, Medicinal, Ornamental, Craft, Industrial


Prunella is a genus of seven species of Herbaceous Plants in the family Lamiaceae, also known as self-heals, heal-all, or "allheal" for their use in Herbal medicine.


Most are native to Europe, Asia, and North Africa, but Prunella vulgaris (the Common Self-heal) is Holarctic in distribution, occurring in North America as well, and is a common Lawn Weed. Self-heals are low-growing plants, and thrive in moist wasteland and grass, spreading rapidly to cover the ground. They are members of the mint family and have the square stem common to mints.

Biological descriptions

The common name "self-heal" derives from the use of some Species to treat a range of minor disorders. Self-heal can be grown from Seed, or divide clumps in spring or autumn.


Medicinal uses

It is reported to have an Antiseptic and antibacterial effect, and to be particularly good in cases of food poisoning. In the Pacific Northwest, its juice was used by the Quinault and the Quileute on boils. They also used the whole plant to treat cuts and inflammations. Ointments can be made by fixing the plant with Grease.

Dried Prunella () is used to make a herbal drink to help restore the body to a natural state after eating too many fried foods. It is also used in the treatment of High blood pressure.
While most of the traditional uses are of unknown (and clinically untested) efficacy, Prunella vulgaris has been shown to be an Antioxidant, immune stimulant, viral replication inhibitor and an Anti-inflammatory agent.
P. vulgaris and P. asiatica have shown some anti-(lung)cancer activity In vitro.

Food uses

The mildly bitter leaves are also good as Salad greens. Prunella species are used as food plants by the Larvae of some Lepidoptera species including Coleophora albitarsella.