Stairway to heaven or Jacob’s ladder plant is a perennial, herbaceous plant that grows up to 50 cm in height. It has a low mound of green ferny leaves with fresh leaves appearing throughout the season.
The green leaves have white margins and are tinged in pink in spring. Jacob’s ladder flower are light blue and appear in panicles. The leaves are pinnate, 20 cm long, and have 5-13 leaflets.
Flowering is from late spring to early summer. Flowers have 5 petals fused at the base. Stigma extends beyond the anther, so self-pollination is difficult. Insects must pollinate the flowers.
Pods are oval with three chambers and remain enclosed by a green calyx. They harvest the plant in autumn and dry it for use.
Jacob’s ladder plant common name
The common names include Stairway to Heaven and creeping Jacob’s ladder. Other names are bluebells and sweatroot.
Stairway to heaven botanical name and family
The botanical name of this plant is Polemonium reptans. It belongs to the Polemoniaceae family.
Geological places where Jacob’s ladder plant grows
In the United States, it grows from Minnesota to New Hampshire and from Georgia to Mississippi. To the west of the Appalachian Mountains, it grows profusely.
Jacob’s ladder medicinal uses and benefits
Though Polemonium reptans has been used in the historical times, it does not find many takers today. It gets its name from the pinnate leaves that resemble a ladder.
- Astringent nature of Jacob’s ladder: the juice from the leaves of Jacob’s ladder is especially useful for treating scrapes and bruises on the skin. This is due to their astringent nature.
- Relief from coughs and colds: It is useful as an expectorant for easing coughs and colds. You can also treat bronchitis using the preparation made from the Polemonium reptans plant. It helps loosen the chest congestions.
- Stairway to heaven treats febrile diseases: Used an herbal remedy for febrile and inflammatory diseases. The febrile diseases have no specific cause, or the cause of the ailment is not known. The preparation made from the Stairway to Heaven plant roots is given to the person suffering from the ailment. Similarly, people suffering from ailments involving swellings can use the decoction made from the roots to get relief from the swelling and the pain.
- Diaphoretic nature: It encourages perspiration. This enhances the curing process, and so they give an infusion made from the dried roots of the Polemonium reptans plant. This will give relief soon.
- Antibacterial and antifungal nature: The Jacob’s ladder plant is useful for treating infections. The crushed root is mixed either in powder form or given as an infusion to the person suffering from the infection. This will help treat the ailment.
- Treat Laryngitis: Laryngitis is the condition where the vocal cords become inflamed. You can use the decoction made from the root of the plant to treat this condition.
- Tuberculosis: This is an infectious disease that affects the lungs. Have the tea made from the powdered root to get quick relief.
- Snake bites: If a person is bitten by a snake, you can apply the paste of the root to the site of the snake bite. This will remove the venom and give the cure for the snake bite.
- Hair rinse: Use of Jacob’s ladder helps improve the condition of the scalp. The health of the hair improves, and you can get good-looking hair.
- Psoriasis: Being skin-friendly, Polemonium reptans paste helps alleviate several skin conditions including psoriasis. Use it in the morning and evening to get the best results.
How to use Jacob’s ladder plant for treatment
You can use the dried roots of the Jacob’s ladder plant as an infusion in water. This infusion is bitter to taste. Else, you can make a tincture in alcohol.