Linden: Who’s this?
Magnificent and long-lived, fragrant and in love, with his thousand hearts in his leaves, Linden (Tilia tomentosa e Tilia platyphyllos) could look at you along the streets that you walk daily, in a silent call to know him. It’s a sensitive Phyto Superhero, but this doesn’t mean he’s without powers.
Linden’s strength is concentrated in his inflorescences and his sapwood, the outermost youngest bark. They are weapons that Linden does not use for fighting, differentiating himself from his Phyto Superheroes colleagues by not using his powers with strength, elimination or expulsion in mind.
His active principles have sedative and antispasmodic properties. Their actions are required when the dog is so troubled and in pain that he could manifest aggression, like in the event of otitis media or otitis interna. Linden works on the central nervous system and calms the dog. The vasodilating action, that the plant possesses, causes a hypnotic effect. For these reasons he is also useful in case of migraines, although we cannot determine with certainty when it does indeed affects dogs, while popular medicine considered it effective in cases of epilepsy.
The phytocomplex mainly consists in flavonoids, particularly rutin (rutoside), other polyphenols and tannins.
Fascinating, mysterious and almost ethereal, this herb and his powers have left several captivating traces in history. Greek language traces his name to the term ptilon, i.e. “wing”, due to the flower’s stalk having a bract resembling a wing. If we looked back to the Latins we would end up considering the term telum, that brings us to the javelin, a weapon manufactured with the wood of the linden tree.
In the past, his green leaves were dried and combined with barley flour or buckwheat, creating “green flour”. But there also have been those who tried to make chocolate from his roasted seeds, adding sugar and other ingredients.
Mario Rigoni Stern talked about this Phyto Superhero in work “Arboreto Selvatico”, recalling how not only humans beings and dogs have tried the effects, but how “sometimes even the bees taking nectar from lindens doze off and relax on the grass, under the shade of the trees”.