Bacopa Monnieri (Sutera Diffusa), Intellectual Tonic

bacopa monnieri

Bacopa is a very branched, bushy, compact perennial with fine stems that spread out or fall back. As a result, it can be used as a groundcover or planted in suspension.

Its round, dark green leaves are 1 to 2 cm long and, all summer, tiny flowers in trumpets, white or lavender, borne at the end of the stems, blossom.

Originally, bacopa grows in the tropics because it needs a lot of water: swamps, mangroves and wetlands make its happiness. It is also called brahmi or water hyssop.

Brahmi oil

The bacopa monnieri has been used for a long time in Ayurvedic medicine, especially for its intellectual tonic properties to stimulate memory and promote concentration. The triterpene saponins and alkaloids that the aerial parts of the plant contain confer on bacopa sedative and anxiolytic properties. Digestive problems (bloating, constipation, irritable colon) can be relieved by bacopa, as well as rheumatism and problems of impotence and infertility. Ask a pharmacist for advice on using bacopa in herbal medicine.

  • Family: Scrophulariaceae
  • Type: perennial
  • Origin: South Asia and South Africa
  • Color: white or bluish flowers
  • Sowing: yes
  • Cutting: yes
  • Planting: spring
  • Flowering: May to October
  • Height: 30 cm

Ideal soil and exposure to plant bacopa in the garden

Bacopa is grown in partial shade in rich, fresh and well-drained soil, protected from drafts and strong sun.

Date of sowing, cutting and planting bacopa

Seedlings can be done between 13 and 18° C, in spring but also a division of tufts. Cuttings are preferable in spring or summer.

Advice of maintenance and culture of bacopa

Regular watering is necessary, whether in pots or in the ground, it should never dry. Straw outdoors and avoid leaving water in the saucer indoors.

You can remove faded flowers to promote new development.

Diseases, pests and parasites of bacopa

Aphids are the enemy of bacopa.

Location and favorable association of bacopa

It is a plant that is grown either in a suspension, if it is for a veranda, in a pot on a shaded terrace, or in the ground in a shady wetland at the edge of the pond.

There are many species of bacopa, among which bacopa cordata which comes in many cultivars, and bacopa monnieri, oily plant, which holds medicinal properties.

(photo by Forest & Kim Starr, CC BY 3.0)

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