Author: Jan Scholten
Name: Valeria; the Latin verb valere means to be strong, healthy.
English: Valerian; Garden valerian; Common valerian; Garden valerian: Garden heliotrope; Setwall; All-heal.
Region: Europe, Asia.
Content: Alkaloids: actinidine, chatinine, shyanthine, valerianine, valerine; isovaleramide may be created in the extraction process; gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA); isovaleric acid; iridoids, valepotriates: isovaltrate, valtrate; sesquiterpenes: valerenic acid, hydroxyvalerenic acid, acetoxyvalerenic acid; flavanones: hesperidin, 6-methylapigenin, linarin; valeric acid, anticonvulsant; isovaltrate, an inverse agonist for adenosine A1 receptor sites; yellowish-green to brownish-yellow oil present.
Perennial plant, up to 1.5 metres high.
Flowers: sweetly scented, pink or white; attract flies, hoverflies of the genus Eristalis.
Use: food by the larvae of some Lepidoptera (butterfly and moth) species,
including the grey pug.
Culture: long history as medicine; in medieval Sweden, it was sometimes placed in the wedding clothes of the groom to ward off the "envy" of the elves; attracts cat like catnip.