Wall Rue (Asplenium ruta-muraria)

Common Name Latin Name Plant Family
Wall Rue
Asplenium ruta-muraria
Polypodiaceae

None known

  • Medicinal Use

    The fronds are astringent, deobstruent, emmenagogue, expectorant and ophthalmic[4, 7, 240]. A distilled water made from the fronds has proved of benefit in the treatment of many eye complaints[7]. The plant is also considered to be useful in the treatment of coughs and ruptures in children[4]. It was at one time used as a herbal remedy for rickets[219] and its tannin content renders it suitable for stopping bleeding from small wounds[7]. The fronds are harvested in late spring and dried for later use[7].

  • Edible Use

    None known

  • Cautionary Notes

    Although we have found no reports of toxicity for this species, a number of ferns contain carcinogens so some caution is advisable[200]. Many ferns also contain thiaminase, an enzyme that robs the body of its vitamin B complex. In small quantities this enzyme will do no harm to people eating an adequate diet that is rich in vitamin B, though large quantities can cause severe health problems. The enzyme is destroyed by heat or thorough drying, so cooking the plant will remove the thiaminase[172].

Cultivation & Habitat

Spores – best sown as soon as they are ripe on the surface of a humus-rich sterilized soil. Keep the compost moist, preferably by putting a plastic bag over the pot. Germinates in spring[1]. Spring sown spores germinate in 1 – 3 months at 15¡c[134]. Pot on small clumps of plantlets into individual pots as soon as they are large enough to handle and grow them on in light shade in a cold frame or greenhouse. Keep the plants humid until they are well established. Once the plants are 15cm or more tall, plant them out into their permanent positions in the spring. Division in spring.
Requires a well-drained position and lots of old mortar rubble in the soil[1]. Requires a humid atmosphere and some shade[28, 31]. A good plant for growing on a shady part of an old dry-stone or brick wall[K], also succeeding in full sun[219]. A very ornamental fern[1], it is very tough but slow to establish[219]. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer[233].
Most of Europe, including Britain, Mediterranean, N. and S. Asia to the Himalayas, E. North America.

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.