motherwort flower


Leonurus cardiaca – aerial parts

In folklore motherwort was known as being a calming and relaxing herbal agent with tonic effects on hormonal, nervous and cardiac systems. It is also a traditional childbirth and postpartum botanical that has been used for centuries.

While motherwort is often considered a herb for women, men can find benefit in using it as well for maladies of the nervous system and heart triggered by stress. It is also known as a cardiotonic for strengthening the heart as indicated by the Latin name cardiaca.


  • Cardiovascular Tonic.
  • Relaxing Nervine.
  • Circulatory Stimulant.
  • Antispasmodic.
  • Hypotensive.
  • Antioxidant, anti-inflammatory.
  • Uterine Tonic.
  • Hypoglycaemic.
  • Digestive Bitter


  • Cardiac insufficiency, tachycardia or other arrhythmias, hypertension, heart palpitations associated with anxiety and excessive worry, especially when they are a feature of insomnia, poor circulation.
  • Menstrual cramping, dysmenorrhea, amenorrhea, menopausal symptoms (especially accompanied by anxiety, insomnia and palpitations), delayed labour, delayed afterbirth. It is often used in the last weeks of pregnancy to facilitate labour and following childbirth to minimise blood loss.
  • Stress, anxiety
  • Hyperthyroidism (Graves’ disease)

No known toxicity.

Consult a doctor before taking motherwort if taking cardiac medications.

Motherwort is contraindicated for women with endometriosis or fibroids because it increases vascularisation to the uterus. Caution should also be taken during heavy menstrual bleeding.

The analysis of contents below is a guide only, product specific data including expiry date is with the item in the shop.

Leonurus cardiaca 1:2. Each 1 ml contains 500mg of dry herb.

Liquid extract in 25% ethanol. Use 15 to 30 ml weekly.

Our clinic uses fluid extracts from Optimal Rx, Herbal Extract Company, Nutrition Care, Mediherb or Sunray Botanicals, in this order.

Motherwort has a traditional use as an emmenagogue and should be avoided by pregnant women in the first trimester (especially in those with a history of miscarriage), second trimester and most of the third trimester. Under the guidance of an experienced practitioner it can be used just before and after labour.