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Lettuce, Opium

Culinary & Medicinal Herb Seeds

We carry a diverse variety of herb seeds, including culinary herbs, medicinals, ethnobotanicals, native plants of the PNW, and nectar and pollen rich flowers attractive to bees, butterflies, and other beneficial insects. All varieties are open pollinated, we do not sell hybrid seeds. Average seed life is 3 years. Please allow 1-2 weeks for shipping.

Lettuce, Opium

Lactuca_virosa.jpg
Lactuca_virosa.jpg

Lettuce, Opium

3.75

(Lactuca virosa)

Quantity:
Add To Cart

Common Names
Opium Lettuce, Lettuce Opium, Poor Man’s Opium, Bitter Lettuce

Botanical Name
Lactuca virosa

Plant Family
Asteraceae (Aster Family)

Life Cycle
Biennial

Native Range
Europe

Hardiness Zone
2-11

Height/Spread
To 4ft tall in bloom. 1ft wide.

Sun/Soil
Likes a sunny spot with poor soil. The most potent plants will be found in full sun and given very little water.

Germination/Sowing
Easy. Seeds can be started in the fall or spring, or anytime throughout the growing season. They can be direct seeded or started in flats and transplanted out. 

Growing/Care 
Plants are best harvested or pulled when in bloom to prevent self-seeding. Can become weedy.

Harvesting
The aerial parts can be collected during the flowering period. The woody stems should be discarded as they do not contain much of the medicine.

Culinary Uses
The young leaves can be eaten as a salad green.

Medicinal Uses
Wild Lettuce can be taken as a cough suppressant for dry irritable unproductive coughs, such as whooping cough.

The herb has similar actions to that of Opium Poppy but is weaker in effect. It has a calming action on the nervous system making it useful for the treatment of insomnia and restlessness. Its pain relieving actions can be applied to digestive cramping and pain, menstrual cramps, and general body aches and pains.

Themes
Apothecary Garden, Deer Resistant, Drought Tolerant, Container Garden.