The flora of the island of Kythera has a number of 723 plant species. Many of these plants show beneficial properties for human body and they are called herbs. Herbs are being used in folk medicine for thousands of years while today they are an alternative healing solution. The prerequisite for use of herbs is knowledge and experience so that it contributes to therapy and it does not cause a risk to the body’s health. This is why it’s better to ask for the advise of a botanologist - therapist for a more proper and safe use of herbs and also to inform the family doctor in cases where the patient suffers from other conditions as well.
Here we are presenting the most important healing herbs that grow on the island that are developing either freely on forest, wild and cultivated areas either with human care in peri-urban areas such as gardens and crofts. The selection of herbs was based on the album “Bee Flight Paths”, a publication of the Kythera Union of Athens regarding the Kythera flora, which granted to us a special license to use photographs and information from the album. For every herb, the main information are mentioned such as its scientific name, its family, the various names we meet in Kythera and all over Greece. Furthermore we considered it would be useful to mention the main healing properties and the collection procedure for every herb based on the information we gathered mostly from the Kostas Bazaios publication (“100 herbs, 1000 treatments”, Bazaios publications.). Finally, we mention smart ideas for another usage of these herbs.
Therefore, get to know the Kythera herbs, walk on the island paths to discover them and exploit their healing properties. Enjoy your trip!