Botanical Name: Scutellaria lateriflora | Family: Labiatae

Common name(s): Skullcap, (Virginian) Scullcap, Mad-dog Scullcap


  • Perennial, herbaceous | Zones 4-8 | Partial shade | 18-24” | blooms July – Sept (small blue flowers)
  • Likes to be wet in the spring.
  • Stratify for a minimum of a week if starting indoors (or plant outdoors in the fall). Germinates in 2 weeks.

Companions: ferverfew, catnip, valerian


Aerial parts from 3” above ground while flowering.


Infusion: 1-2 t to one cup boiling water, infuse for 10-15 minutes. Drink 3x/day or as needed

Tincture: take 2-4ml of the tincture 3x/day

Combinations: valerian


Constituents: Flavonoid glycoside including scutellarin and scutellarein, trace of volitile oil, bitter

Actions: nervine, sedative, antispasmodic

Uses: general rejuvenation of the nervous system, nervous tension, hysteria, epilepsy, exhaustion, depression, PMS

Cautions: overdose of tincture causes symptoms similar to epilepsy


Uses the root. Cold energy, bitter taste. Removes heat toxins from the heart, lungs, and liver. Used to treat jaundice, pneumonia, among others.


  • Homegrown Herbs, Tammi Hartung
  • Holistic Herbal, David Hoffman
  • A Modern Herbal, Mrs. M. Grieve
  • *The Way of Herbs, Michael Tierra (gives botanical name as Scuttelaria baicalensis)
  • photo credit: intheburg via photopin cc

I got some skullcap from Emily during one of her wildcrafting classes and planted it down with the valerian in the orchard. I kind-of love it that plants used with each other grow well together as companions.