Ulmus fulva. N.O. Urticaceae.
Synonym ► Moose Elm, Red Elm.
Habitat; North America, particularly Canada.
Features ► The dried inner bark of Ulmus fulva is one of the most valued articles in herbal medicine. It is tough and fibrous, becoming soft and mucilaginous when moistened. It is this mucilaginous quality which originated the popular name of Slippery Elm. The inner bark has a slight pinkish or rusty tint, is faintly striated longitudinally, has a strong characteristic odour, and the distinctive “slimy” taste.
Action ► Emollient, demulcent, pectoral.
The finely powdered bark, prepared as an ordinary gruel, has shown remarkable results as a demulcent in catarrhal affections of the whole digestive and urinary tracts, and in all diseases involving inflammation of the mucous membranes. Both bronchitis and gastritis yield to its soothing
and healing properties, and as a nutrient in general debility it is probably unrivalled.
A teaspoonful of the powder to 1 pint of boiling water makes the food or gruel. The powder should be first thoroughly mixed with an equal quantity of brown sugar and the boiling water added in small quantities, say four to the pint, mixing each time until a smooth result is obtained.
Slippery Elm bark coarsely powdered makes one of the best possible poultices for boils, carbuncles, chilblains, and skin eruptions generally. It soothes the part, disperses inflammation, draws out impurities, and heals rapidly.