Jimsonweed – Datura stramonium

***CAUTION! Poisonous!***

Parts used: flower, leaf

Traditional uses: Poisonous. Poultice of wilted leaves used on boils and fresh wounds. Smoked for asthma. Poultice of decoction of leaves mash applied to the chest for pneumonia. Compound poultice with crushed seeds rubbed on sore throat.

“Antispasmodic, anodyne and narcotic. Its properties are virtually those of hyoscyamine. It acts similarly to belladonna, though without constipating, and is used for purposes similar to those for which belladonna is employed, dilating the pupil of the eyes in like manner. It is considered slightly more sedative to the central nervous system than is belladonna.” ~Grieve MH

Used for asthma and lung trouble – “Jimson-weed (Datura) is used in treating bronchial troubles and asthma.” ~Randolph OMF 94

For insomnia – “For persistent insomnia, one has only to put a handful of Jimson-weed (Datura) leaves into each shoe and set the shoes under the bed with the toes pointing toward the nearest wall.” ~Randolph OMF 114

Worn in hat as protection from sunstroke – “A few Jimson-weed leaves, placed in the crown of a hat, are believed to protect the wearer from apoplexy or sunstroke.” ~Randolph OMF 114

“As a protection against sunstroke, a few leaves of the jimson weed…were placed in the crown of the hat.” ~Parler FBA III 3317

“A few Jimpson-weed leaves, placed in the crown of a hat, are believed to protect the wearer from apoplexy or sunstroke.” ~Rayburn OFE A-5 “Apoplexy”

Tea used for nervousness – “A tea made from Jimson weed is used in the treatment of nervousness, hysteria, and delirium, but without much success so far as I can see.” ~Randolph OMF 114

Poultice for cuts to take out infection – “If a cut got infected and you wanted to draw that out use jimson weed. Take jimson weed and beat that up and make a poultice out of that and that would draw that out.” ~Carter and Krause HRIO

Smoked for asthma – “Dry jimson weed, put it in a pipe and smoke it for astma.” ~Carter and Krause HRIO

Used on boils – “Jimson weed grows wild out around the field or woods or barn. You just take the leaves and put ‘em on a board or something and just beat ‘em to a pulp and put that on gauze or a plain cloth and make a poultice and put that right over a boil.” ~Carter and Krause HRIO

“Beat up Jimson leaves…well and place over a boil, it will draw the boil to a head. Be very careful as Jimson leaves are very poisonous. They smell terribly too.” ~Parler FBA II 1560

On cuts and wounds – “Gympsom leaves (Datura stramonium) are used as antiseptic for cuts and small wounds on the body.” ~Parler FBA II 2021

“For cuts, infections, or boils take a Jimson weed…you boil the weed and make a lotion and put it on the cut.” ~Parler FBA II 2527

In shoes for insomnia – “Put jimson weed in you shoes; put the shoes underneath your bed; and turn the toes toward the wall.” ~Parler FBA II 2512

Poultice used for “drawing” – “Remedy for nail wound our any time you wanted to “draw out poison.” Jimson weed…poultice made by mashing up Jimson weeds and putting on the wound.” ~Parler FBA III 2643

Seeds eaten for arthritis – “An old remedy for arthritis is to eat 9 Jimson Weed…seeds a day.” ~Parler FBA III 2968

With manure for tuberculosis – “Jimpson weed…and cow manure mixed in water and drink will cure tuberculosis.” ~Parler FBA III 3473


Carter, Kay & Bonnie Krause Home Remedies of the Illinois Ozarks (HRIO)

Grieve, Margaret A Modern Herbal (MH)

Moerman, Daniel E. Native American Ethnobotany (NAE)

Parler, Mary Celestia Folk Beliefs from Arkansas (FBA)

Randolph, Vance Ozark Magic and Folklore (OMF)

Rayburn, Otto Ernest Ozark Folk Encyclopedia (OFE)