Don’t Overlook Me! I’m Pineapple Weed!

Pineapple Weed

Pineapple Weed Photo

You’ve probably walked over hardy pineapple-weed (Matricaria discoidea) often enough if you’ve walked at the boulevard, and never noticed it. An annual herb, this miniature plant with fern-like leaves thrives with full sun in roadside gravel or the disturbed, compacted earth along sidewalks.

When crushed the leaf or flower emits a scent of pineapple or chamomile, it’s cousin, though it’s funny green head lacks the pretty petals of chamomile.

It’s uses include:

  • When bruised, it can be rubbed on skin to repel insects.
  • Edible in salads, though it becomes somewhat bitter after blooming.
  • Herbal tea, similar to chamomile, serves as a gastrointestinal aid for stomach upsets, gas, vermifuge, and irregularity.
  • Seeds used as a salve for infected sores.
  • Decoction for fever.
  • Used to treat children’s colds and colic.
  • Medicinally for postpartum anemia and to promote lactation.
  • Can be used for muscle spasm and as a sleep aid.

Some caution is advisable as some individuals are allergic to this plant.

Native to northwestern North American but found in northeastern America, northeast Asia, and Europe. A ruderal species.

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