Cleavers (Galium aparine)

by Renee Lindstrom, GCFP – Living in Natures Love Lifestyles

MortarEdibleDyetea kettle

Also Known as: Goosegrass, Barweed, Catchweed, Clivers, Goosegrass,  Grip Grass,  Sticky-willy,  Zhu Yang

Uses:  Culinary, Pot Herb, Medicinal, Dye, Detox, Coffee Substitute, Love Potion, Weight Control, Anti Aging, Tonic

Parts used:  Seeds, Flowers, Leaves, Roots

Preparation:  Fresh, Dried, Tincture, Tea, Flower Essences,  Tea, Juicing, Poultice, Wash


  • Symbolizes:   Finding Love
  • Language of Flowers meaning:  Tenacity, I am determined to win your love.
  • Associated with: Binding Love, Crown Chakra
  • Element:  Water
  • Governed by:  Saturn, Venus, Moon


Cleavers are from the Rubiaceae family, the same family as coffee.  The seeds can be dried  ground into a coffee substitute.  Cleavers are valued more as a medicinal than an edible tho’ young shoots can be eaten fresh and added to bulk up soups, eggs and stew type dishes.  The best way to extract this plants nutrients and medicinal values is through cold infusion, making it great for  juicing.  However the pulp may need to be filtered out.

Health and Wellness

Cleavers are highly valued as a medicinal remedy and diuretic in Asia as an internal and external agent.  Externally it is used as a poultice for inflammation and wound care, and a wash for calming for edema inflammation, treating rashes, boils and cysts.   Infusing it as tea can brings down fevers, be calming for sleep and a powerful detox for the lymphatic system and liver.  It has been used to reduce high blood pressure, weight loss and due to its astringent properties to tighten skin.

Dye Plant

The roots of the Cleaver plant is used to make red dye.

Buy Dried  Canadian Cleaver Herb

Buy Canadian Cleaver Seeds

Traditional uses and properties of herbs are for educational purposes only.  This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.  Every attempt has been made for accuracy, but none is guaranteed. Any serious health concerns or if you are pregnant, you should always check with your health care practitioner before self-administering herbs.

Copyright 2014 – 2021  Living in Nature’s Love by Renee Lindstrom, GCFP,
Feldenkrais® Practitioner since 2007, Communication & Empathy Coach since 2004, Art of Placement  since 2000