Forget-me-not: is it useful?
Huge patches of forget-me-nots are flowering in the garden right now- this weed is too pretty to rip out! I decided to find out a bit more about this abundant plant.
Forget-me not is a genus with 74 species of the family Boraginaceae. According to the ‘Weeds of the Blue Mountains’ website the species of forget-me not found here is myostotis arvensis, which means of the fields. However, myostotis sylvatica looks very similar.
The book “Weeds of the South-East mentions the following forget-me-nots” found here: Myostotis arvensis, Myostotis discolour, Myostotis laxa subsp caespitose, Myoscopis scorpinoides, Myoscopis sylvatica.
But apart from being pretty, what interested me was weather this plant has any practical, medicinal or edible use. I was a bit disappointed, because there are only few medical uses reported. Amongst them, it was used for lung problems and nose bleeds. However, as the plant contains pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PA), which might cause liver damage and cancer. Minor medicinal use seems to be tied to a major risk. There are certainly other plants which do the same job without the risk!
Some sources mention as well that the flowers can be used to decorate salads, but because of the PA’s I would be cautious about using it.
Forget me nots are used in flower essences.
A pretty flower with few uses!
Does anyone have other information? Something to add? Is there any herbalist using forget-me not?