HomeGrowing TipsMullein Seeds: The Natural Remedy You’re Missing Out On

Mullein Seeds: The Natural Remedy You’re Missing Out On

Mullein is a medicinal plant that has been used for centuries to treat a variety of ailments. While mullein leaves and flowers are more commonly used, the tiny seeds found within the flowers also have therapeutic benefits. Read on to learn all about mullein seeds and how you can use them to improve your health.

What are Mullein Seeds Good For?

These seeds contain saponins, flavonoids, minerals, and other compounds that have natural expectorant, diuretic, and anti-inflammatory properties. Some of the main benefits include:

Relieving Congestion and Coughs: The saponins in the seeds help expel mucus and phlegm from the lungs, making them useful for treating respiratory congestion, coughs, colds, and bronchitis. They act as a natural expectorant, helping clear out excess mucus.

Soothe Sore Throats: Due to their anti-inflammatory properties, they can help reduce throat inflammation and irritation. Steeping them in hot water can make an excellent throat-soothing tea.

Ease Ear Pain: Mullein seed oil may provide relief from earaches and ear infections when applied directly inside the ear canal. The oil’s anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties can reduce swelling and discomfort.

Promote Urinary Tract Health: The seeds have mild diuretic effects, meaning they can help increase urination. This makes them useful for flushing out the kidneys and urinary tract. Mullein seed tea may help treat urinary tract infections.

Relieve Skin Irritation: Applied topically, mullein seed oil can calm rashes, burns, cuts, and other skin irritations due to its anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial actions. It may help speed wound healing.

Relax Muscles: Mullein seed oil may provide relief from muscle cramps and spasms when massaged into the affected area. Its sedative properties can also help relax the body.

Cup of Mullein Tea with Fresh Blooming Mullein
Cup of Mullein Tea with Fresh Blooming Mullein

Growing Mullein from Seeds

If you want to grow your own mullein plants for medicinal uses, you’ll need to start by planting mullein seeds. Here are some tips:

  • Mullein seeds need exposure to cold or frost to germinate. Before planting, put the seeds in the freezer overnight to mimic winter conditions.
  • Plant the seeds in late fall or early winter, scattering them over prepared soil. They can also be started indoors and transplanted outside later.
  • Mullein seeds are very small, so mix them with sand to distribute them more evenly when sowing.
  • Plant the seeds very shallowly, no more than 1/4 inch under the soil.
  • Keep the soil moist until the seeds germinate, which takes 10-14 days.
  • Mullein grows best in full sun and in poor, well-drained soil. Space plants 1-2 feet apart.
  • First-year plants will form a rosette of leaves. Flowering stalks will shoot up in the second year.
  • Harvest the tall flower spikes when they bloom in the summer of the second year.
mullein plant
mullein plant

Obtaining Mullein Seeds

Wondering where to get mullein seeds? Here are some options:

  • Gather seeds from wild mullein plants in mid to late summer. Shake the flower stalks over a container to collect the tiny seeds.
  • Purchase seeds from garden centers or online herb retailers. Most sell them by the packet or in bulk quantities.
  • Save seeds from mullein plants you grew yourself. Allow some flower spikes to fully dry on the stalks, then break them apart to remove the seeds.

No matter how you obtain them, they should be stored in an airtight container in a cool, dry place. Properly stored, they can remain viable for up to 3 years.

Best Form of Mullein for Lungs

When it comes to benefiting lung health, many herbalists recommend using mullein leaf tea or tincture. Here’s why:

  • Mullein leaves contain the highest concentration of soothing mucilage and expectorant saponins, making tea an ideal preparation.
  • The hot tea also helps liquefy mucus, allowing the lungs to expel it more easily.
  • Mullein leaf tincture can also be helpful, especially when traveling since it doesn’t require hot water to prepare.
  • Both tea and tincture provide the anti-inflammatory benefits of mullein, which can calm coughs and soothe irritated airways.

Of course, these seeds have their own expectorant properties and can be used in conjunction with the leaves. Try adding some when brewing mullein leaf tea for an extra boost.


If you or a loved one suffers from respiratory congestion, sore throat, earaches, or other inflammatory conditions, these seeds may provide you with natural relief. Their many health benefits make them well worth seeking out. Consider growing your own mullein plants so you always have access to them. With their long history of traditional use around the world, they are a natural remedy you don’t want to miss out on!


How do you use mullein seeds?

Mullein seeds can be used to make tea, tincture, oil infusions, syrups, and more. To make tea, steep 1-2 teaspoons of seeds in hot water for 10 minutes. The seeds can also be ground into a powder and consumed in capsules.

What vitamins are in mullein seeds?

Mullein seeds contain several vitamins and minerals including vitamin B2, vitamin C, magnesium, potassium, and calcium. They are a good source of iron as well.

Are mullein seeds safe to eat?

Yes, mullein seeds are edible and generally considered safe. They have been consumed as food and medicine for many years. However, some people may experience mild stomach upset or diarrhea from eating large amounts of the seeds.

How long do mullein seeds last?

Properly stored in a cool, dry place, mullein seeds can remain viable for up to 3 years. After that germination rates start to decline, although some seeds may last for up to 5 years. For best results, use fresh mullein seeds each year.

Can you smoke mullein seeds?

Smoking mullein seeds is not recommended, as inhaling the smoke can be irritating to the lungs. Mullein leaves can be smoked to relieve congestion, but this should be done cautiously. In general, making tea or tincture are safer way to use mullein medicinally.



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