With a history of traditional use stretching back thousands of years, Comfrey has been cultivated as a healing herb since at least 400 BCE. The Greeks and Romans commonly used Comfrey to stop heavy bleeding, treat bronchial problems and heal wounds and broken bones.
When it comes to potent herb remedies, comfrey is one of the best-documented throughout history. Throughout the years it’s also been called “knitbone,” and “boneset” for its reputed medicinal properties.
Poultices were made for external wounds and herbal tea was consumed for internal ailments. It is said that the Roman legions also used this herb to heal wounds suffered in battle.
Mention comfrey in a room full of herbalists and you’ll most likely be front seat to a heated discussion. Everyone’s got an opinion regarding the safety of comfrey, and most herbalists aren’t shy about expressing it.
Comfrey has been historically used for all manner of injuries and accidents, including but not limited to broken bones. It had an equally strong reputation for helping with external wounds that were not healing properly. This versatile herb was also used extensively for tuberculosis and irritating dry lung complaints in general.
The simplest way to use comfrey for a wound is as a poultice. Using fresh or dried leaves, combine with warm water and place over the wound, covering with a bandage. The poultice should be damp but not drippy. Sometimes herbs are mixed with other ingredients to make a paste, which clings better to the area being treated.
Another simple method is to apply a compress. With a compress, you make a strong “tea” by steeping the leaves (fresh or dried) in boiled water. A clean cloth is then soaked in the tea and applied (once cooled to prevent burns) to the injured area. Repeat this application, replacing with a warm compress cloth.