Goldenseal (Hydrastis canadensis): an annotated bibliography

  • Authors: Predny, Mary L.; Chamberlain, James L.
  • Publication Year: 2005
  • Publication Series: General Technical Report (GTR)
  • Source: Gen. Tech. Rep. SRS-88. Asheville, NC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Southern Research Station. 67 p.

Abstract

Goldenseal (Hydrastis Canadensis), a member of the buttercup family (Ranunculaceae), is an herbaceous perennial found in rich hardwood forests throughout the Northeastern United States and Canada. Originally used by Native Americans as both a medicine and a dye, the herb was eventually adopted by the settlers and eclectic physicians in the 19th century. The alkaloids in goldenseal have been found to have antibiotic, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, and tonic effects. Scientists and physicians continue to expand on the knowledge of the clinical applications and disease-fighting potential of the plant. Growing awareness of possible medicinal benefits has increased worldwide consumption, which, combined with a continual loss of habitat, has greatly reduced wild populations. Goldenseal has been listed under Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) Appendix II protection since 1997. Demand for cultivated roots has increased as wild populations become scarce, motivating research into propagation and cultivation techniques. More attention should be focused on: educating consumers about the appropriate uses of the herb in order to reduce overconsumption; working with growers to increase the profitability of cultivation and reduce pressures on wild plants; and identifying and tracking wild populations to determine the most effective management and conservation practices.

  • Citation: Predny, Mary L.; Chamberlain, James L. 2005. Goldenseal (Hydrastis canadensis): an annotated bibliography. Gen. Tech. Rep. SRS-88. Asheville, NC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Southern Research Station. 67 p.
  • Keywords: Conservation, goldenseal, Hydrastis, medicinal herbs, nontimber forest products, poaching
  • Posted Date: April 1, 1980
  • Modified Date: August 22, 2006
  • Print Publications Are No Longer Available

    In an ongoing effort to be fiscally responsible, the Southern Research Station (SRS) will no longer produce and distribute hard copies of our publications. Many SRS publications are available at cost via the Government Printing Office (GPO). Electronic versions of publications may be downloaded, printed, and distributed.

    Publication Notes

    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.
    • Our online publications are scanned and captured using Adobe Acrobat. During the capture process some typographical errors may occur. Please contact the SRS webmaster if you notice any errors which make this publication unusable.
    • To view this article, download the latest version of Adobe Acrobat Reader.