Common tansy, botanical description, chemical composition, use in everyday life, in cooking, in modern scientific and folk medicine.

Common tansy (Latin Tanacetum vulgare) is a perennial herbaceous plant, a type species of the genus Tansy of the Astrov family. It grows throughout Europe, in Turkey, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, China, Japan and Korea.. 

Tansy, botanical description, chemical composition, use in everyday life, in cooking, in modern scientific and folk medicine.

Common tansy grows along roads, fields, meadows, in shrubs, at the edges, in meadow steppes, birch forests, and upland meadows. It does not form large thickets, but is found everywhere. Plant of forest and forest-steppe zone. Clogs perennial grasses of long-term use, meadows, pastures, gardens, vegetable gardens.

Botanical description of tansy.

Common tansy is a perennial sod plant with a height of 50-150 cm. The plant has a characteristic (camphor) smell. The rhizome is long, ligneous, creeping, branching. The stems are numerous, straight, faceted, branched at the top, slightly pubescent or bare.

Common tansy, botanical description, chemical composition, use in everyday life, in cooking, in modern scientific and folk medicine.

The leaves are alternate, oblong-ovate, twice pinnate, with 5-12 pairs of oblong-lanceolate, pointed, serrate leaflets, less often almost whole-marginal. The upper side is dark green, the bottom side is glandular, with dots. The lower leaves are petiolate, the rest are sessile, stiff.

The flowers are small, bisexual, regular, yellow, tubular, collected in baskets, and those, in turn, are in thick apical corymbose inflorescences. The wrapper is multi-row, imbricate, hemispherical, leaflets of the wrapper are green, with a dry-filmy edge. The receptacle is naked, the peripheral flowers are female, sometimes short-lingual. The middle flowers are bisexual. The fruit is an oblong pentahedral achene with a short, finely serrated margin. Common tansy blooms in July – September. The fruits ripen in August – September.

The chemical composition of tansy.

During flowering, tansy inflorescences contain:

Alkaloids (0.04-0.5%).
Organic Acids (Tanacetic and Gallic).
Tanning and bitter substances.
Vitamins (ascorbic acid, rutin, carotene).
In the seeds – fatty oil.

Tansy ordinary has the ability to accumulate manganese. The main component of essential oil is v-thujone. In addition, the oil contains a-thujone, pinene, L-camphor and borneol, as well as bicyclic sesquiterpene unsaturated dioxylactontanacetin. The content of ketones (thujone and camphor) in Siberian plants ranges from 0 to 61%.

The use of tansy in everyday life and cooking.

The ancient Egyptians, Persians, Greeks used tansy for embalming corpses. From the roots of the plant you can get green paint. Used as an insecticidal agent against fleas and flies. Repellent. It is active against the tobacco mosaic virus.

Common tansy – a fodder plant for sheep, sika deer, deer, ground squirrels, groundhogs. In large quantities for livestock is poisonous. There were cases of poisoning of domestic animals that ate tansy with uniform food. A small admixture of tansy in the hay gives the milk a bitter taste.

Leaves are used for flavoring salads, canned food, for flavoring liquors, confectionery. Sometimes they are replaced with ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg. The peoples of the North tansy meat carcasses to protect them from decomposition. The aerial part of plants in fresh form is used as a substitute for vanilla for baked goods. Leaves are used in medicine and for aromatization of spirits. Seeds used as an anthelmintic.

Common tansy is toxic due to the presence of thujone, so its overdose should not be allowed. The flowers and leaves contain essential oil, the amount of which depends on the time of collection and on the place of growth. The highest content of essential oil (from 1.5 to 2%) is observed during flowering. The yield of essential oil from fresh flowering plants is on average 0.1-0.2%, from dry – 0.2-0.3%. Received by steam distillation of the plant..

Essential oil from flowers and leaves is a yellow or greenish-yellow liquid. In France, England, Hungary, the USA, Kazakhstan and some parts of Russia (Sverdlovsk, Kirov region) tansy is cultivated as an essential oil plant. It is used in food and chemical pharmaceutical industries. Oil is used with great care in medicine as an anthelmintic. In case of overdose, it can cause vomiting, diarrhea and collapse due to the presence of thujone.

Tansy in modern scientific and traditional medicine.

Tansy-based drugs have found application in modern medicine. It is included in the pharmacopoeia of Belgium, Finland, as well as Portugal (decoction, infusion) as an anthelmintic. In scientific medicine use tansy flowers (Latin: Flores Tanaceti), collected at the beginning of flowering and dried individual flower baskets or shields with a peduncle no longer than 4 cm (from the upper baskets).

Preparations from them are used to stimulate appetite, improve digestion, in diseases of the liver and intestines, with bronchial asthma, rheumatism, as an anthelmintic in ascariasis and pinworms (infusion) and a drug that increases the acidity of gastric juice, with constipation.

Common tansy is part of choleretic fees. Common tansy preparations containing the sum of flavonoids and phenolcarboxylic acids are allowed as choleretic drugs.

In domestic folk medicine, leaves and flowers were used for hepatitis, cholecystitis, angiocholitis, as an astringent, for enterocolitis, anacid gastritis, and giardiasis. In foreign traditional medicine, tansy is used for:

Peptic ulcer.
For the regulation of the menstrual cycle.
Stomach cramps.
How diuretic.
For the treatment of purulent wounds, ulcers, scabies, bruises, boils, with dandruff.

Common tansy as a poisonous plant requires caution when used internally.

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