It is found on grasslands, woodlands, high-lying ground and in mountainous regions. The plant has somewhat kidney-shaped leaves cut into 7 to 9 shallow lobes, on stout, short stalks and inconspicuous yellowish green flowers which can be seen from April to June but often later. Some of the leaves lie flat on the ground and in the morning dewdrops can be found in the centre, shimmering like pearls. At altitudes over 1000 metres the Alchemilla alpine or Silver Lady's Mantle is found which grows on limestone as well as basalt.
Gather, of both plants, the whole plant during the time of flowering, later only the leaves, and dry them in the attic. As the name implies, it is essentially a woman's herb and esteemed as such.
Since Christian times it has been associated with the Virgin Mary. Not only is Lady's Mantle beneficial for menstrual disorders, "whites", abdominal disorders and indisposition during menopause, but it also helps at the beginning of puberty, together with Yarrow tea, to influence the onset of menstruation favourably. In cases, where, for young girls, menstruation will not commence despite professional medication, it is Lady's Mantle together with Yarrow (mixed in equal proportions) that brings everything into line.
The action of Lady's Mantle is astringent and very rapid healing, and it is used also as a diuretic and heart strengthening remedy for wound-fever, for festering wounds and neglected sores.
After removal of teeth, Lady's Mantle tea is recommended as one of the best remedies. Within a day the wounds heal after several rinses. It relieves weakness of muscles and limbs and helps in anaemia (anemia). For injuries after delivery, debility of the abdomen of women who have difficult confinements or are inclined to miscarry, for strengthening of the foetus and uterus, Lady's Mantle is of great help. Women so affected should start drinking Lady's Mantle tea after the third month. It is a cure-all for all female disorders and, together with Shepherd's Purse, even helps in prolapse of the uterus and in hernia.
For the last named cases, use four cups of Lady's Mantle tea, which should, as far as possible, be prepared from freshly picked herbs, and sip throughout the day. In addition, the affected parts are massaged with Shepherd's Purse tincture (see "directions" for Shepherd's Purse}; for prolapse of the uterus, the massage is upward from the vagina.
Additionally, Yarrow tea sitz baths (100 gm. of herbs per bath; in all three baths weekly, as the bath water, re-warmed, can be used twice). Our forefathers used the plant as a wound herb, externally and internally, for epilepsy and hernia.
A quotation from an old herbal says: "When one is ill, whether young or old, let two handfuls of Lady's Mantle in a measure of water boil for as long as it takes to hard boil an egg, and drink it."
In today's herbal medicine the plant has again its proper place. The Swiss Abbe Kuenzle stresses its merits: "Through early and prolonged application of this medicinal herb, two thirds of all operations performed on women would be quite unnecessary, since it heals all inflammations of the abdomen, fever, burning, suppuration, ulcers and hernia. Every woman in childbirth should drink much of this tea. Some children would still have their mother, some stricken widower his wife, had they but known this herb.
Crushed and applied externally, Lady's Mantle heals wounds, stings and cuts. Children who, despite good food, have weak muscles, become strong through the continued use of this tea."
Alchemilla alpine, a mountain variety, has leaves with a silvery underside. It should be used in cases of obesity. 2 to 3 cups drunk daily, are beneficial. It is effective also for restless nights; diabetics should drink it often.
Weak children visibly strengthen, if Lady's Mantle or, better still, Silvery Lady's Mantle is added to the bath water. For 1 bath approx. 200 gm. of herbs are used (see General Information "bath").
Lady's Mantle, together with Shepherd's Purse, as written in full detail under Shepherd's Purse, is used for muscular atrophy and serious and incurable disorders of the muscles.
This valuable medicinal herb is used for multiple sclerosis as well. I have been told by people from Burgenland (Austria) that, if Lady's Mantle tea is drunk and used externally to wash the heart region, it brings a marked relief in disorders of the cardiac muscle.
Infusion: 1/4 litre of boiling water is poured over a heaped teaspoon of herbs, infused for a short time.
Herb application: A suitable amount of fresh herbs is washed and crushed on a wooden board with a wooden rolling pin and applied.
Bath: For a full bath, 200 grn. of dried or a few double handfuls of fresh herbs are soaked in a bucketful of cold water overnight, warmed the next morning and the liquid added to the bath water (see General Information "bath").