There are two types of plantain herbs, ribwort (Plantago lanceolata) which has narrow leaves and greater or broadleaf (Plantago major).
Plantain plants grow everywhere, and can even grow between cracks in footpaths. The Native Americans called plantain “white man’s footprint” because it came on, and grew from the settler’s footwear. The ribwort plantain is in flower at the moment. Both are great herbs, and are very safe to use. Plantain is one of the most useful medicinal herbs and is in my top 5 herbs list. The leaves are used in herbal medicine and can be crushed up for bites, cuts or stings. Plantain is a drawing herb, it can draw out splinters or thorns. It is great for coughs, sore throats, chest and digestive complaints. Plantain is used in many skincare products as it is soothing, cooling, healing and anti-bacterial, and is very useful for acne and other skin conditions. It is also good for treating allergies in a tea, along with nettle and elderflower. One can also make tinctures, infused oils and ointments from this great herb.