FR: Betoine GER: Betonie IT: Betonica SP: Betonica
BOT: Betonica officinalis (Stachys betonica, Stachys officinalis)
FAM: Labiatae ILL: Plate 13, No. 6
Betony is a herb of hedge banks, woods and heaths. It grows wild in England, Wales and other parts of Europe and Asia Minor and is a rare escape in the United States. In appearance it is rather like a deadnettle, with aromatic purple red flowers densely grouped at the top of the stem and a few lower down in the axils of the leaves.
Formerly, betony was used as a substitute for tea and as a flavouring in various herb beers. It was listed as essential in Tudor herb gardens. Today it has little culinary importance and is grown mainly as decoration.
It may be of interest that the chorogi (Chinese or Japanese artichoke) is a close relative (Stachys Sieboldii).