|Cowslip - Brixton Water Lane|
Closely related to the primrose the cowslip also has two types of flower, which produce seeds when pollen is transferred between flowers by insects. Each stem on a cowslip can produce up to thirty flowers per head. There are lots of legends about cowslips that crop up through history. Possibly the most famous is the first cowslip springing from where St Peter dropped the keys to heaven. More importantly than legend are all the uses of cowslip, it can be made into wine or used in salads. Herbalists use the plant to help with chest problems such as bronchitis or whooping cough, it can also be used to treat sleeping problems, headaches and as a diuretic. If you are going to use the roots you must make sure there is an abundance of the plants present in the area before picking. Roots are best harvested in early autumn.