Mule’s Fat (Baccharis viminea)

B. glutinosa. B. salicifolia. (Ruiz.&Pavon.)Pers.
Common Name Latin Name Plant Family
Mule's Fat
Baccharis viminea

An effective ground-cover plant for sunny banks[200].

The plant has an extensive root system and is very useful for stabilizing sand dunes etc[200].

The leaves have been used as a tonic wash for the scalp and hair to prevent baldness[257].

A charcoal made from the stems has been used to make gunpowder[257].

  • Medicinal Use

    A decoction of the leaves and stems has been used as a female hygienic agent[257].

    An infusion of the leaves has been used as an eyewash and has also been applied to bruises, wounds or insect stings[257].

  • Edible Use

    Young shoots – cooked[257]. Roasted and eaten as a famine food when little else is available[257].

  • Cautionary Notes

    None known

Cultivation & Habitat

Seed – no pre-treatment is required[113]. Surface sow in pots a cold frame in the spring, do not let the compost dry out. Germination usually takes place within 1 – 2 weeks[113]. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the cold frame for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, July/August in a frame. Very easy[K]. Cuttings of mature wood of the current seasons growth, November in a frame. Easy[K].
Succeeds in almost any soil, from heavy clays to pure sands, if it is growing in a sunny position[11, 200]. Very tolerant of poor dry soils[200]. This species is not hardy in the colder areas of the country, it requires an almost frost-free climate and tolerates temperatures down to between -5 and -10¡c[200]. Plants respond well to trimming[200]. Dioecious. Male and female plants must be grown if seed is required.
South-western N. America – California to Mexico.

Become ungovernable, break the chains of the matrix; grow and forage your own food and medicine.

*None of the information on this website qualifies as professional medical advice. Take only what resonates with your heart and use your own personal responsibility for what’s best for you. For more information [brackets] [000], see bibliography.