While catnip is for humans at first glance nothing more than a plant with pretty flowers, it seems to have a magical effect on cats. As soon as they come close to the fragrant plant, many tiger tigers get into a noisy state, rolling on the ground or shredding the leaves. The plant also contains interesting ingredients for people: it has a relaxing, digestive, detoxifying and slightly euphoric effect.
Catnip: description and cultivation
Originally from southern Europe and Africa, catnip has been native to central Europe since the mid-18th century. The Labiatae prefers nutrient-rich, dry clay or sandy soil and loves warmth and light. Catnip is between 60 and 100 inches high.
The green leaves of the plant have a pleasant smell of mint or lemon. The flowers always occur close to each other in a fifth and thus form a calyx, which usually shines in blue-purple, but also in white, pink or yellow. In general, both the leaves and the flowers of catnip are individually different for each specimen.
Catnip is ideal as a garden or balcony plant. It can be grown both by cuttings, as well as by division of the rootstock or by sowing. The perennial plant is winter resistant and very robust.
Effect of catnip on cats
Why exactly catnip has such a strong effect on cats is not yet clear. However, it is clear that not all cats react to the scent of the plant.
While some tiger tigers dance around the stems in euphoric tones, tearing and eating the leaves, rolling on the floor or spinning in circles like in a drug frenzy, the scent leaves other cats completely cold.
Especially young, not yet mature or very old cats are usually interested in little catnip. Nevertheless, the scent seems to have no aphrodisiac effect, because even neutered cats can be intoxicated by the plant.
But catnip is not dangerous. On the contrary, many cat owners fill dried catnip in small bags and use them as a toy for their pets. Anyone who plays with the idea of planting catnip in their own garden should, however, be prepared to soon see all the cats in the neighborhood gathered in the flowerbed.
Effect of catnip on humans
Catnip can also be slightly euphoric on humans. The dried leaves can be drunk or smoked as tea.
In catnip tea, the herb has a relaxing, analgesic, sweat-inducing, antispasmodic, antipyretic and digestive. Even with insomnia, irritability and nervousness can bring tea from catnip improvement. Add two tablespoons of dried catnip with 0, 25 l of hot, not yet boiling water and let soak for five minutes. The tea tastes refreshing with mint and lemon.
Some people smoke the dried catnip as a substitute for marijuana, and it has a very weak effect. For this you can smoke the cabbage either pure or mixed with tobacco. The fresh leaves of catnip can be chewed and thus bring relief for toothache.
In addition, the leaves are suitable for an envelope for external injuries. Even in ointments, which are used in problems with rheumatism or hemorrhoids, occasionally catnip is used.