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Growing Eyebright: Your Itchy Eye Relief Medicine, and more…

Belonging to the Figwort family (a type of flowering plant), eyebright is completely edible. From its flowers, to its stems, and its leaves, all the parts of this herb can be used in some manner or the other to treat several conditions. This herb has been used for several years to treat a host of health problems.
Eyebright can be identified by its small, oval shaped leaves, and small white or red flowers. The flowers have a black center, and purple streaks on the petals with a central yellow spot. It grows primarily in grassy areas such as meadows and pastures.

  • Common Names
  • Eyebright
  • Botanical Name
  • Euphrasia, various species
  • Family


Growing Eyebright – Gardening Basics

An annual semi-parasitic herb that grows about 2 to 12 inches high.  It thrives when it attaches itself to the roots and stems of grasses, absorbing mineral substances from them.  The leaves are rounded, toothed and small, about ½ inch long.  They have a tiny white flower that is double lipped with a yellow throat and dark purple veins.  The flower is so attractive you don’t want to clip it off.

It is native to southern Europe as far north as Siberia and the Himalayas.  It prefers pastures and meadowland with a poor soil.  It you want to grow this you need to plant the seeds near host grasses.

UK – Click here to purchase seeds

US – Click here to purchase seeds


Important Growing Information:


SOWING:Seeds need to frozen for 90 days to break their hard outer shell. Loosen the soil to a depth of approximately 1 inch using a rake or combining with your fingers. Broadcast the seeds over the prepared area. Eyebright seeds are fine, so heavy application is not necessary. Scatter around the host grasses, press seeds firmly into the soil and cover with loosened soil. Do not pack densely. Allow the plants to grow undisturbed until August, when this wildflower blooms profusely.

LIGHT PREFERENCE: Choose a grassy site that receives full sun

SOIL REQUIREMENTS: Keep the germinating seeds moist, but do not overwater. Test the moisture by squeezing a ball of soil. The soil should stick together, but you should not be able to squeeze out any water.




Eyebright Eye Compress

Eyebright compress 


2 teaspoons dried eyebright

2 teaspoons ordinary black tea leaves

Hot water


Mix the dried eyebright and tea leaves in a small bowl, then spoon into 2 empty tea bags. Seal or fold over the bags. Place the bags in a shot glass of hot but not boiling water. Leave for 10 minutes, then squeeze out and place one over each eye.

Relax with the eye compresses on for 10 to 15 minutes. Make fresh as you need it.


Medicinal Uses & Benefits of Eyebright:

  • Medicinal Uses: * Allergies * Congestion * Eyes/Vision * Sinus
  • Properties: * Astringent
  • Parts Used: Aerial parts
  • Constituents: glycosides (including aucubin), saponins, tannins, resin, volatile oil.

How to Use: Eyebright

Eyebright’s main use in herbal medicine is, as Culpepper suggests, ” for all infirmities of the eyes that cause dimness of sights“. Eyebright’s centuries of use as a remedy for conjunctivitis and bloodshot eyes is insufficient to convince some modern herbalists of it’s effectiveness, because the scientific evidence for it’s use is thin. Although there is no specific evidence that eyebright as a whole is particularly useful for eye conditions, there is considerable evidence that compounds in the herb are anti-inflammatory and antibacterial..

Preparation Methods & Dosage :

Eyebright infusions can be taken as a tea, or used as an eyewash or compress. Also available in tinctures and capsules. Eyebright is often combined with other herbs and nutrients useful in maintaining ocular health, including bilberry, rutin, and hesperidin. Eyebright is often combined with nettle for use in allergies.

Eyebright Side Effects: Make sure that an eye bath is sterile, and beware of prepared infusions that may not be sterile.

NOTE:  If you have had any kind of eye surgery, do not use eyebright in any manner without consulting your doctor. Also, women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should consult their doctors before consuming eyebright. Not for use during pregnancy or lactation.


This information in our Herbal Reference Guide is intended only as a general reference for further exploration, and is not a replacement for professional health advice. This content does not provide dosage information, format recommendations, toxicity levels, or possible interactions with prescription drugs. Accordingly, this information should be used only under the direct supervision of a qualified health practitioner.

Additional Resources

Herbal Preparations and research:



This entry was posted on April 28, 2015 by in MEDICINAL PLANTS AND HERBS and tagged , , , , , .
C Katt Krespach, NTP

C Katt Krespach, NTP

C Katt Krespach, NTP is a nutritional therapist and long time activist with a passion for healing arts and social entrepreneurship, …working in both areas for over a quarter of a century. Her site has a worldwide following. is her newest project and coaches brick-and-morter business owners into global social entrepreneurship. She is an author, public speaker, and entrepreneur. You can get Katt’s free edible flowers e-book here and also watch a short documentary on how she overcame neuropathy, significant weight gain, and more with easy, natural and healing mindsets. Follow Katt on Facebook, Wordpress, Twitter, and Instagram.

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