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Author Topic: Comfrey - tell me if you grow it or not.  (Read 12703 times)

deepinthewoods

  • Guest
Re: Comfrey - tell me if you grow it or not.
« Reply #30 on: May 17, 2012, 03:19:22 pm »
well, ive read that and lifted this section.

 Can the results of a baby rat test case, where they were fed extremely high doses by injection, have relevance to the effect of adult humans using comfrey? Noting that one comfrey leaf contains approximately one milligram of alkaloid in this particular test project, it is possible to give a similar dose level for man. As an average man is about 70kg it would be necessary to use the alkaloids from 19,880 leaves to produce a comparative dose level, and possible toxicity. As rat deaths occurred at levels equivalent to comfrey 28 times their body weight, it has been estimated that a man would need to consume 19,880 leaves, for a possible, similar effect. If humans were as vulnerable as baby rats to liver damage; and if these figures were less speculative, then it could be calculated that it would take 16 years to accumulate sufficient alkaloids to produce any detectable change in liver function. This would require eating, approximately, 100g of comfrey leaf, every day, based on each large leaf measuring an average 60cm, which would make 5- 6 large leaves, a day. Therefore, in order to reach the dose level at which the test showed that change in liver function occurred; it would take a man 48 years. Liver damage would result at around 150 years

YorkshireLass

  • Joined Mar 2010
  • Just when I thought I'd settled down...!
Re: Comfrey - tell me if you grow it or not.
« Reply #31 on: May 17, 2012, 03:26:33 pm »
Interesting stuff.

It seems somewhat obvious to me that if a herb is potent enough to heal, then it is potent enough to have other effects too :) What's the quote... "The poison is in the dose"?  The dose makes the poison. Plus studies on isolated compounds neglect the role that other compounds in the same leaf may have.

pikilily

  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Do what you enjoy; And enjoy what you do!!
Re: Comfrey - tell me if you grow it or not.
« Reply #32 on: May 17, 2012, 07:23:49 pm »
Yeh - yorkshire lass...that is my opinion.  I havent decided yet....really! you can read any amount of research which will contradict and argue the different stances.

I must admit i am a bit cautious about anything 'herbal' because there is no surefire way of controlling dosage! Apparently comfrey, for example, can have varying amounts of the different 'active ingredients' depending on when it is picked, and how it is grown, harvested and presented.

Would you take paracetamol if the package said 'may contain any amount of paracetamol from 0.01grams to 10 grams' ??

Also if an animal naturally grazes various vegitation (in with its normal fodder which is freely available) - fine, but i dont actively go picking and feeding herbage for them.  ie we have willow growing at the perimeters of the fields, if the sheep or horses eat some ok but i am not going to harvest and feed it to them.

Just, an interesting debate though!
Emma t
If you don't have a dream; how you gonna have a dream come true?

sabrina

  • Joined Nov 2008
Re: Comfrey - tell me if you grow it or not.
« Reply #33 on: May 17, 2012, 07:56:27 pm »
We have it all over the place but mine has the yellow flowers. I use it for feeding my plants. Suppose to make a good poltice for wounds.

LulaB

  • Joined Apr 2011
Re: Comfrey - tell me if you grow it or not.
« Reply #34 on: May 18, 2012, 09:31:14 am »
I've planted some Bocking 14 cuttings this year.  I'm hoping to go biodynamic eventually (yes, all my neighbours think I'm mental) and comfrey is one of the 'super herbs'.

I'm looking forward to using it.  My husband might not be so keen on the "tea" I'm going to make for the garden, though...  He doesn't like the smell of rotting vegetation.  Frankly, who does?

northfifeduckling

  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Fife
    • North Fife Blog
Re: Comfrey - tell me if you grow it or not.
« Reply #35 on: May 18, 2012, 04:16:37 pm »
Have bought and planted 2 different varieties 10 years ago (none B14) and now it's everywhere. I do make liquid feed from it and put it on the compost. Leaves spread around seedlings are also keeping slugs underneath the comfrey ( so do Rhubarb leaves) and you can pick the slugs off in the morning. Bees love it but the tall vareity I would not choose to plant again, it will take over our whole garden in no time however much I share with other gardeners  - too late now  :( ...anyone in Fife want some  ;D ;D ?

Anke

  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Re: Comfrey - tell me if you grow it or not.
« Reply #36 on: May 18, 2012, 10:20:17 pm »
I have Bocking 14, from the Organic catalogue originally, I htink it's about 10 plants, they grow well, don't spread, I use for "muck" tea (with some goat manure), goats also eat it (given to them a few leaves a go), I cut it all down late in the season and chuck onto muck/compost heap... so good all round.

benkt

  • Joined Apr 2010
  • Cambridgeshire
    • Hempsals Community Farm
Re: Comfrey - tell me if you grow it or not.
« Reply #37 on: May 18, 2012, 10:27:24 pm »
We grow a bed of comfrey (thanks to fleecewife!). Used it a bit last year as a liquid feed, have masses this year so will  be  looking for even more uses!

Plantoid

  • Joined May 2011
  • Yorkshireman on a hill in wet South Wales
Re: Comfrey - tell me if you grow it or not.
« Reply #38 on: May 19, 2012, 11:37:12 pm »
I down loaded the ebook version of Lawrences comfrey past present and future it took a wee while to get into it and I'll read it several times .
I like the style and the presentation . it's a pity that most modern day writers are not so honest or skillful , most seem to use flawed data and take it as gospel without ever doing any research or thinking thing through themselves ......   So much for our current education system.
 
 I now have several small comfrey ( Bocking 14 plants ) in my garden. I hope to use it as part  green matter in my "  compost in 18 days Berkley Method " project .
 I want it included in the general compost mix for the trace elements in my soil lesss growth medium .
 
As I have a glasshouse and loads of plants  in it I'm hoping to make the liquid plant feed and put a few pop bottles of it in the garage deep freeze for use in between making up new batches.
 
 I also want to drink the tea infusion you can make to see if the tonic effect will give me the odd boost and help with my disabilities.
 
I've recently met some people who have a few plants , they make plant feed and also feed it to the chickens & the pigs . When I next see them I'll take the idea with me of them growing more to use in the spring & summer to have a good protein feed at little expense for their stock .
 Though it may be difficult for they are kind of small holding on a , " Scree slope of crumby Welsh limestone"  that has next to nothing wrt soil content deeper than  four inches but they may well now have that problem sucessfully in hand .
International playboy & liar .
Man of the world not a country

northfifeduckling

  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Fife
    • North Fife Blog
Re: Comfrey - tell me if you grow it or not.
« Reply #39 on: May 20, 2012, 10:36:17 am »
my chickens are not interested in the slightest in comfrey - I wish they were  ;D :&>
I always have been hesistant on internal uses or as wild food but would be happy to use it again as a poultice or in an ointment :&>

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Comfrey - tell me if you grow it or not.
« Reply #40 on: May 20, 2012, 11:08:08 am »
Going by how vile it smells when turning it into a liquid feed, I don't feel inspired to drink it  ;D ;D :P . Although I do drink nettle tea and nettles smell even worse than comfrey when rotting down.   What I have found when trying to extract a dye from it, which I assume would happen when making tea too, is that there is so much slime (that mucilaginous word from way back  :D ) that I can't use it as a liquid.  Maybe I'm doing something wrong.
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

Herdygirl

  • Joined Sep 2011
Re: Comfrey - tell me if you grow it or not.
« Reply #41 on: May 21, 2012, 09:45:07 pm »
The other half and i found that if you plant it around the edges of your veg plot it helps to keep other weeds at bay, don't know why  ???

northfifeduckling

  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Fife
    • North Fife Blog
Re: Comfrey - tell me if you grow it or not.
« Reply #42 on: May 21, 2012, 09:56:40 pm »
I know how  ;D ...not even rhubarb thrives near it - but I wonder about the veg  ??? :&>

 

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