- Family Asteraceae (formerly Compositae)
- Bidens tripartita
- Sticktights, Water Agrimony, Beggar’s Ticks, Tickseed, Spanish Needles
- Spanish: Aceitilla, Té de Coral, Té de Milpa
- Nahuatl: Acocohxihuitl
- Maya: Chichik-kul or K’an-mul
- None listed
An annual growing to two feet with toothed, lance-shaped leaves, yellow, button-like flower heads and burr-like fruit. The plant grows throughout Europe, North America, and other temperate regions, including Australia and New Zealand, thriving in damp places and near fresh water. It also grows wild from the western US through Mexico and south into Argentina.
Nicholas Culpeper wrote in 1652 that the plant helped an “evil disposition” and such other conditions such as dropsy, jaundice, and liver and spleen obstructions.
- staunches blood flow
- volatile oil
- Aerial parts
Although a somewhat obsolete medicine, the plant was once esteemed as an effective treatment for bladder and kidney problems.
The plant quickly stops blood flow and can be used externally, as well as internally for uterine hemorrhage or other conditions that produce blood in the urine.
The astringency in the plant helps to counteract peptic ulceration, diarrhea, and ulcerative colitis.
When employed to treat digestive tract ailments, it is usually combined with such an herb as ginger that reduces flatulence,
A related species, B. pilosa, is a South American herb that now grows throughout much of Africa and Australia. In Africa, it is used as a food crop, although it is considered to be unappetizing. It is also used there to treat diarrhea, but in the Carribean, the plant is used to induce menstruation.